Advertisement
National

Pac summons Mera Board

The story is bigger than Mera CEO recruitment—Mera Board

Advertisement
Joyce Chitsulo

The Public Appointments Committee (Pac) of Parliament has summoned the Board of Directors of the Malawi Energy Regulatory Authority (Mera) over the way it handled the recruitment of the organisation’s chief executive officer Henry Kachaje.

Pac Chairperson Joyce Chitsulo said the committee is scheduled to meet Mera Board in Blantyre on Saturday and Sunday.

The meeting follows a letter from the Office of the President and Cabinet that has recommended the firing of the Mera Board.

Advertisement

The letter, which Secretary to the President and Cabinet (SPC) Zangazanga Chikhosi has signed, says, considering the alleged poor handling of the recruitment of the Mera CEO, it had been decided by the government that the Mera Board be removed on the grounds of “incompetence”.

Ironically, the decision by OPC comes at a time the matter is in court.

Chikhosi, in a letter dated February 18 2022, notes that pursuant to Section 8 of the Energy Regulations Act, the removal of the Mera Board from office is subject to an inquiry and approval from Pac.

Advertisement

“It is against this background that the committee is requested to approve the removal of the Board of Directors of Mera after satisfying itself of the incompetence of the board,” Chikhosi says.

However Mera Board Chairperson Leonnard Chikadya, in a statement issued last night, bemoaned the leaking of the letter of the SPC addressed to the Pac Chairperson, requesting the Committee to remove the Mera Board of Directors from office on grounds of incompetence.

“The letter makes reference to Section 8 of the Energy Regulation Act that guides holding of an enquiry before approval of the removal of the Board of Directors. I can confirm that Mera Board already appeared before an enquiry of Pac immediately after the matter of the Ombudsman report related to recruitment of Mera Chief Executive Officer was leaked to social media

“After [the] Pac enquiry that SPC is requesting now, Pac did not find any grounds to remove Mera Board. This decision was duly communicated to Mera Board. It is clear that the story here is bigger than the recruitment of Mera CEO,” he said.

He further observed that several issues led to the SPC’s decision, including that of the Mera Board’s refusal to approve fuel tender contracts for National Oil Company of Malawi—where SPC is the Chairman—which would result in the increase of fuel pump prices that would further burden Malawians.

“It is unfortunate that the leaked letter points to incompetence when Mera Board itself constitutes Malawians who have excelled in their personal and professional careers and contributed to the development of our country and yet are being labelled as incompetent.

“I had committed myself to appear before Pac before I saw this leaked letter. The board has noted a circulating letter and will take a position soon,” he said.

Kachaje was appointed Mera CEO in August last year but one of the candidates for the position, Richard Chapweteka, lodged a complaint with the Office of the Ombudsman, questioning the recruitment process.

In November last year, Ombudsman Grace Malera concluded her investigations into the matter and, when she was about to release results of the investigations, the Mera Board obtained a court injunction stopping her from proceeding with the announcement.

Advertisement
Tags
Show More
Advertisement

Related Articles

Back to top button
Close

Adblock Detected

Please consider supporting us by disabling your ad blocker