Malawian public servant arrested over k120 million cash

As investigations by both Malawi police and the graft–busting body, Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB), on the massive looting of government resources continue, two more people were arrested over the weekend in Lilongwe.

Deputy National Police Spokesperson Kelvin Maigwa identified the two as Lora Savala, 39, of Mbelego Village, TA Chitukula in Lilongwe and Caroline Savala aged 31 from Mkaka Village, TA Mkula in Mchinji.The two, both female civil contractors, were allegedly paid over K200 million by government but did not render any service.   Maigwa said in an interview on Tuesday that the suspects have been charged with three counts of conspiracy, money laundering and obtaining money by false pretence.

“Our investigations have revealed that the suspects were paid the money through the Ministry of Tourism, Wildlife and Culture. This is, however, despite the fact that there was no contract between government and the accused. Lora Savala was paid over K160 million while Caroline Savala pocketed over K49 million,” he said.  It was, however, not immediately known if the two suspects are related.

Two more officials from Ministry of Tourism are also answering different charges in connection with plundering of resources in the cash-gate scandal including Principal Secretary Tressa Namathanga Senzani, who was granted bail by Lilongwe Magistrates’ Court last week.

Police and the Anti Corruption Bureau are also probing the Secretary for Tourism’s multi-million kwacha mansion in Lilongwe. The other official Leonard Kalonga, who works as Chief Tourism Officer, was however denied bail by Lilongwe Magistrate court last week.

According to ACB spokesperson Egrita Ndala, the bureau asked the court not to grant the suspect bail as investigations are still underway.

Newly appointed Minister of Justice Fahad Assani last week told Parliament that investigations into the scam will not only target civil servants but Members of Parliament and the private sector too.