Member of Parliament for Rumphi East Kamlepo Kalua has accused Capital Hill of playing double standards in the way it is handling the purchase of vehicles for government departments.
When responding to the speech President Peter Mutharika made during the opening of the 46th Session of Parliament last Friday, Kalua said instead of telling people about the vehicles that have been bought for the President, Vice President and other senior government officials, the Executive has decided to “misinform” Malawians on vehicles bought at the National Assembly.
“Second Deputy Speaker, let me also tackle this issue of vehicles. Finances of the National Assembly are done at Capital Hill. And yet we see some conflicting signals from the government, that the National Assembly has misappropriated money,” Kalua said.
He then listed the vehicles which have been bought for other government departments.
“When we talk about the vehicles, I understand that they bought four vehicles for the President worth K650 million, four VXs for the Vice President worth K280 million, 10 Prados for senior officers worth K1 billion and 30 Land Cruisers for Principal Secretaries worth K2.6 billion. So, who is misappropriating money?” Kalua said.
“And these are not mentioned, yet they are there. If they want evidence we have chasis numbers, we have engine numbers and when they were bought. Some of these were bought in March this year and some have just been bought. Government is not telling people that it has spent almost K3 billion on vehicles. They are not saying this and we are asking: why are they misinforming the people of Malawi?”
Kamlepo then told the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) government not to intimidate him.
“You have got to be very careful because I was among the people who brought multiparty democracy. I cannot be intimidated by anybody. I know why I fought for multiparty democracy and nobody can intimidate me. And I say nobody! And when I start, it will be sad for the DPP government, and you know about it, they know about it. Let’s be fair and reasonable when it comes to national development. National unity should be a priority,” he said.
After he finished his contribution, there was no point of order from government on the vehicles.
Leader of the House Francis Kasaila, however, stood on point of order to say something on Kalua’s “threats”.
“Mr. Deputy Speaker, I know that my honourable colleague used to threaten UDF [United Democratic Front] so that he could get something at the end of the day. DPP will not fall into that trap. Therefore, nothing will come to you even if you threaten the DPP,” Kasaila said.
Kalua wanted to stand on point of order to respond to what Kasaila said but was not given an opportunity.
He, however, spoke despite not being given the floor to speak.
“Point of order, I should answer back. I did not get anything from [former president Bakili] Muluzi and I don’t intend to get anything from DPP, neither do I want to get a ministerial position. I’m happy where I am,” Kalua said.
Second Deputy Speaker of Parliament Clement Chiwaya, in direct response to Kasaila said:
“Honourable Minister, point out what has gone out of order. We have to proceed in an orderly manner.”