Police Tuesday arrested former Chief of Staff of State Residences Peter Mukhito in connection with the importation of cement worth billions of kwacha using former president Peter Mutharika’s Taxpayer Identification Number (TPIN).
Mutharika’s bodyguard Norman Chisale as well as businessperson Ahmed Shafee Chunara, were also arrested over the same scandal.
National Police spokesperson James Kadadzera confirmed the arrest of Mukhito.
“It’s true, we have arrested Mukhito, but I am yet to get further details,’’ he said.
According to sources, Mukhito was arrested partly because he is the one who authored a letter to Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) instructing the revenue-collecting body to clear duty free the bags of cement that were bought at K5 billion, and were said to have been bought for Mutharika’s personal use.
However, in a press statement, the former president denied having imported any cement.
In the statement signed by his secretary Linda Salanjira, Miutharika said he learnt with shock that Malawi Revenue Authority approved the clearance of duty free cement using his TPIN.
“The former president was never at any point undertaken any construction projects requiring such substantial volumes of cement in any event, he does not operate any business to sell cement on retail of wholesale. For the avoidance of doubt, the president did not have any dealings with the alleged cement trade either personally or through a third party,” Salanjira said.
Last week, Senior Resident Magistrate Florence Msekandiana granted bail to Chunara on condition that he pays a cash bond of K10 million and produce two sureties of K50 million each non-cash bond.
Meanwhile, Police yesterday also rearrested Chisale in connection with the murder of Issa Njauju who was one of the directors at the Anti- Corruption Bureau.
Lawyer for Chisale, Chancy Gondwe, confirmed the arrest Tuesday.
This is the third time Chisale has been arrested after he was initially arrested for his alleged involvement in the dubious cement deal using Mutharika’s TPIN before been caged again for attempted murder.