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Malawi government recovers K300m from Cashgate loot

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Malawi government has so far registered slow progress in its efforts to recover money that was plundered from State coffers in what is now popularly known as Cashgate, The Daily Times has learnt.

According to the Anti- Corruption Bureau (ACB), so far government has recovered K299, 000,000.00 only since investigations and prosecutions began about two years ago.

So far, 10 people have been convicted of the massive theft of government resources that happened during former president Joyce Banda’s rule in which chief convict Oswald Lutepo alone laundered K4.2 billion.

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At least K24 billion was lost through Cashgate.

ACB Senior Public Relations Officer, Egrita Ndala, said in response to a questionnaire that the Bureau, in conjunction with the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), is yet to recover any money or property from former director of Tourism Leonard Kalonga, Caroline Savala and Mkhudzo James Bandula Chirwa, who were convicted but are waiting for their sentences.

“So far, the Bureau and the DPP’s office have managed to recover the following; a house valued at K61,000,000.00 and K2,000,000.00 cash from Theresa Namathanga Senzani, K12,000,000.00 cash from Esnart Ndovi, K24,000,000.00 cash from Maxwell Namata and Luke Kasamba,” she said.

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Ndala also said Lutepo surrendered his company Wogate Cotton Ginnery while ACB restricted K200,000,000.00.00 from a transaction to buy property “which had not been concluded yet by Mr. Lutepo”.

This case, according to Ndala, was also jointly handled by the Bureau and the DPP’s office.

“The Bureau is, however, yet to recover anything from Kalonga, Savala and Mkhuzo James Bandula Chirwa, but the two offices have engaged in discussions with Kalonga’s lawyers for him to make restitution before the sentence is passed,” she said.

The two offices are also yet to recover money and property from another Cashgate convict Allan Magombo whose sentencing is scheduled for February 18 this year.

Among cases government is also yet to recover property and money from is the matter involving former Accounts Assistant Victor Sithole and Wyson Zinyemba Soko whose cases are being handled by the police.

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