Board of directors for FDH Financial Holdings Limited (FDHFHL) have sent on sabbatical leave the company’s Group Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Thom Mpinganjira, who is embroiled in the alleged judges’ bribery attempt court case.
Mpinganjira was on Wednesday granted bail by the Blantyre Chief Resident Magistrate Court after he was charged with three counts of offering an advantage to a public officer, an attempt to induce Justices Mike Tembo and Healey Potani to exercise their function corruptly, to accept K100 million for the same purpose and an attempt to induce a public officer to abuse his office respectively.
In a statement released on Wednesday, FDHFHL Board Chairperson, Noel Mkulichi, said the leave was with effect from January 27 2020, a day before he was re-arrested after the High Court Judge Dorothy NyaKaunda Kamanga restored the warrant of arrest which Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) obtained against him in Lilongwe.
“The stakeholders are, therefore, informed that from this date, he stepped aside from his role and responsibilities within the FDH group of companies. In view of the above, the board is pleased to announce the appointment of George Chitera as interim CEO,” the statement reads.
According to Mkulichi, until his appointment, Chitera was the group’s Chief Finance Officer.
“The board would like to reaffirm FDH Financial Holdings Limited’s commitment to serving its valued customers, the general public and all stakeholders, ” the statement reads.
The statement did not come out clearly on whether the decision to relieve Mpinganjira of his duties is in connection with his involvement in the alleged attempt to bribe the five judges who are presiding over the presidential election results case so that they rule in favour of Peter Mutharika and Malawi Electoral Commission.
Established in November 2007, FDHFHL has subsidiaries such as the FDH Bank, FDH Money Bureau and First Discount House which were set up as part of the group restructuring of first Discount House Limited.