Jul 20, 2018 Last Updated 10:40 AM, Jul 19, 2018
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The Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB) is urging local councils to exercise financial prudence amid continued revelations of massive plunder of public resources.

The ACB continues to send out officials to investigate the squander of the funds the councils.

Investigating councils begun, following President Pater Mutharika’s allegations of corrupt practices by ward councillors, when awarding road contracts.

The Malawi leader argued that the corruption in awarding road contracts in councils, is leading to roads of substandard quality being constructed.

Concerns have also been raised on the mismanagement of funds by local councils, especially those meant for the District Development, and Local Development Fund.

In other districts where the investigations have been concluded, it has been discovered that massive corruption is taking place and officials are being prosecuted.

Director General of the ACB, Reyneck Matemba points out that the graft busting institution will not leave those involved in corruption scot free.

He further observes that the Bureau spends huge sums of money on corruption investigations which could be used for other developmental activities in the country.

“We will continue investigating councils across the country to ensure that people exercise financial prudence because councils are now managing huge sums of money which requires in-depth tracking so that people do not take advantage to abuse funds,” Matemba explained.

Currently the graft busting body is also partnering with organisations to educate the public so that they help in empowering Malawians by making them aware of what is happening around them and what they should expect from their councils.

Newly elected Distirct Council Chairperson for Karonga, Councilor Harry Hudson Mwanyembe of Rukulu Ward has promised to to fight corruption and ensure that the district gets developed.

 “Let me assure you that you have chosen the right person for this position.

From today, I will make sure that there is no corruption here because I know that it is the major factor that is affecting the development of our community,” said the new chairperson.

In the fight for the position Mwanyembe defeated councilor Bydon Katambika Msiska of Khwawa ward and former chairperson, Earnest Mwalughali of Lupembe ward by 6 votes to 3 respectively.

During the elections, Councilor Hurry Hudson Mwanyembe got 6 votes while his two opponents got 3 votes each.

In his manifesto, councilor Mwanyembe openly said he will refurnish the tainted image of the council by making sure that issues of corruption become history.

To achieve this, Mwanyembe has since called upon the office of the district commissioner to review some of its programs and reschedule dates for its activities to give opportunity to the mass to make them aware of what transpires at the council.

Extending his congratulatory message to the victor, councilor Mc Donald Tengamowa Munthali, called upon all ward councilors to cooperate with Mwanyembe for the common good of the poor citizens.

Munthali further pleaded with Mwanyembe to remember to delegate his deputy when necessary.

“My advice to you chairperson is that you should not let down your deputy. You need to delegate him in other activities,” said Munthali.

Concurring with Munthali, Member of Parliament for Karonga Central constituency, Frank Tumpale Mwenefumbo said it is not strange to see Mwanyembe assuming the position of the council chairperson because his manifestos speak well for him.

Therefore, Mwenefumbo asked all ward councilors, members of parliament and the whole district council officials to provide full support to Mwanyembe for him to work efficiently.

Councilor Patrick Chunda was elected vice chairperson who has unmercifully defeated the only female councilor in Karonga district Joyce Nyondo by 7 votes to 5.

Such elections at the council happen after one year term of office.

Representatives of the Reserve Bank Of Malawi (RBM) have revealed that the country is losing about $980 million through illegal transactions.

In the local currency, this is over MK6 billion.

The bank made the announcement during the launch of a tip-offs anonymous program aimed at detecting fraud.

Speaking to Capital FM, RBM Governor Dalitso Kabambe stressed that the country will lose its potential for development if these transactions are left unchecked.

He expressed concern on the massive corruption scandal popularly known as the Cash Gate Scandal pushed Malawi backward in terms of development and it is only norw that it is beginning to recover from all the money it lost through the scandal

“Malawi is failing to development at a good pace like its neighbouring country’s because of illegal transactions”, Kabambe added.

The Governor went on further to say that as RBM they will do all they can to ensure that  a repetition of the Cashgate scandal or any other pilferage of government resources never happens as the cheques that were used in the latter were those of the reserve bank.

Malawi has for years been affected by corruption and commentators have continued to stress on the need for investigations into such matters to be quickly finalised so that wrongdoers are brought to book in order to deter would be offenders.

Just last week, the Anti Corruption Bureau disclosed that it had finalised investigations in district councils across the country and expressed concern on the findings as government resources are being embezzled by unscrupulous Malawians.

Investigations by the Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB) in local district Councils have uncovered massive corruption.

The investigations found that a lot of money has been plundered and has also led to the arrest of some councillors.

The ACB began investigating Councils, following the President Pater Mutharika’s allegations of corrupt practices by ward councillors, when awarding road contracts.

The President argued that the corruption in awarding road contracts in Councils, is leading to roads of substandard quality being constructed.

Concerns have also been raised on the mismanagement of funds by local Councils, especially those meant for the District Development, and Local Development Fund.

Speaking to Capital Fm Deputy Director General of the ACB disclosed that investigations had been completed in Mulanje, Nsanje, Mangochi, Karonga and Kasungu.

“Currently we are at an advanced stage with respect to prosecution in Nsanje, Mangochi, Mulanje and Kasungu but we haven’t yet started prosecutions in Kaonga though we have completed investigations,” Matemba explained.

According to Matemba their investigations have uncovered massive plunder of public resources.

However due to the anomalies faced during investigations the ACB had to engage various partners to assist them to achieve their goals.

At the moment the ACB is sending out officials to investigate on how exactly the funds were squandered and find loopholes in their systems.

Apart from that the graft busting body is also partnering with organisations which aim at educating the public so that they help in empowering Malawians by making them aware of what is happening around them and what they should expect from their councils.

Matemba added that they have arrested five councillors in Mulanje who were behind the awarding of contracts meant for the district’s development to themselves.

The step taken by bureau is one of the steps that the various organisations are taking to flush out corruption in the country.

The recent findings by the Transparency International on corruption perception which rate Malawi poorly, is being described as a wake up call for the country on the fight against corruption.

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