That a group of people calling themselves Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) leaders could come together and agree that one of them, who owes the people of Malawi K10 billion, should take 167 years to pay it back at the rate of K5 million per year simply beggars belief.
Yet this is precisely what Finance Minister Felix Mlusu told Parliament in regards to the sale of Malawi Savings Bank (MSB) more than six years ago.
The issue is that the then DPP government, through the special vehicle that was created to collect all monies owed to the wholly government-owned bank before it was sold to FDH, agreed with Mulli Brothers Limited (MBL) to pay back K10 billion through such unbelievably and unprecedented terms spanning a jolly good 167 years.
The relief is that Mlusu told members of Parliament (MPs) that government has revived the debt collection vehicle with such a treasonous agreement—for that is what it is—and wants it quashed.
Simply put, come rain or sunshine, the K11 billion that companies and individuals owe Malawians from MSB, including the K10 billion from MBL, will be collected.
Yet the matter still leaves a bitter aftertaste and goes on to show how this country was raped and its dignity utterly defiled through actions of people who thought they had cut it in life and were above the law.
Who lives for 167 years in this world to be given such a length of time to pay back a loan?
The sale of MSB was acrimonious and most Malawians did not like it one bit.
But the DPP government had put its foot down.
The then Finance minister Goodall Gondwe told us the bank was practically insolvent. Government as sole shareholder was faced with two choices: either to capitalise it or sell it.
Gondwe told us government chose the latter because it was wise to do so.
It did not exactly placate those of us who cried foul at the sale because bad signs were written all over this deal although, in retrospect, probably government had no choice.
Today we are vindicated that not everything was done within the morality or conscience of the Malawi nation.
How can a bank that was owed K11 billion be sold at K9 billion? Was the bank unable to collect this money so that it remains afloat?
The answer is simple. It was abused by DPP politicians and their cronies.
Those who owed the bank were protected by these politicians and those who worked for it and could have done something to collect what the bank was owed—just like all banks do—were stopped and they complied because they wanted to save their jobs.
This treasonous behaviour was unrelenting until the finances of the bank Malawians owned could not take it anymore that it was near collapse and Gondwe was right to sell it.
What was wrong was its total abuse.
But time has finally caught up with those who took this country as their own to strip it of its assets in the most unhindered way. They must pay the full price of accountability.
And talking of abuse, the treatment of 18 women from Msundwe in Lilongwe who were raped in broad daylight in October 2019 by Police officers who had gone there to investigate the death of their colleague is also shocking to say the least.
The High Court sitting in Lilongwe has ordered the police to compensate the 18 women in amounts ranging from K4 million to K10 million.
Yet the question the Police have not answered until now is: Is this enough to compensate the poor women for the trauma they suffered at the hands of the brutal marauding police officers who defiled their dignity?
Where are the thugs masquerading as police that performed these horrendous crimes? When are they going to face their victims in a court of law to get punished for horrible actions on poor defenceless women who were not even there during the demonstrations that led to the death of their fallen colleague?
Police do not engage in any private business and so this money it has been ordered to pay will not come from the private pockets of these merciless criminals but taxpayers.
Where is their personal accountability? Will they be left scot-free?
This should not be allowed to stand and as Malawians we must not accept it.
The reality is the new top command in Police is attempting a cover up of the horrendous crimes committed by their own officers against the poor and defenceless women of Msundwe.
It beggars belief!