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Police question Peter Mutharika on K5 billion cement saga

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Malawi Police on Wednesday questioned former President Peter Mutharika on his involvement in the K5 billion cement importation saga that has seen two of his aides arrested.

Mutharika is entangled in the cement saga where his personal bodyguard Norman Chisale, former Chief of Staff Peter Mukhitho and Lilongwe based businessman Ahmed Chunara were arrested on allegations that they imported about 1.2 million bags of cement using Mutharika’s Taxpayer Identification Number (TPIN).

However, Mutharika denied any involvement ,in a press release issued recently, saying he has learnt with shock that Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) approved the clearance of duty free cement, using his TPIN.

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Sources at Mangochi Police Station told the The Daily Times that Head of Criminal Investigations Department (CID) Deputy Commissioner of Police Bob Mtekama led the interrogation team at Mutharika’s residence in Mangochi.

Mtekama confirmed to have interrogated Mutharika on his involvement in the importation of cement from Zambia and Zimbabwe but refused to give more details, saying he was not mandated to speak to the media.

“We have the details but call Kadadzera to give us permission to talk to you. As technical people we have the information but we need permission before divulging it to the media,” he said.

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Police spokesperson, James Kadadzera, asked for more time to be briefed by the investigators, but later said he does not have information on the issue.

Personal Secretary to the former president Linda Salanjira refused to comment on the matter.

Mutharika is alleged to have taken a hand in using his privilege as President to import duty free cement worth K5 billion.

Law experts had observed that Mutharika statement did not necessarily exonerated him and that it smacked of carelessness on his part as such rendering him unbelievable.

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