"It's shameful that the UDF party wants to take us back to the dark days,"

Mr Gwanda Chakuamba (2003)

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Sunday, June 22, 2008

Did Muluzi swindle ADB schools money in 1995


Debate has broken in Malawi on how the former government of
Bakili Muluzi managed funds from African Development Bank (ADB) and
Kuwait fund meant for construction of primary schools in 1995.

A circulation suggests that in 1995 Malawi Government got a funding from the bank to construct 92 schools countrywide.

The donation which was complimented by Kuwait funds for the same cause
is slowly becoming a hot debate among non partisan publics. And the
former president needs to clear the air before he is suspected to have
misappropriated the money.

The report says, during that time government claimed to have put the
schools money to a good use by constructing almost half the schools.

But the circulation says, when government was asked to account for
the funds, it listed some old training colleges as among new schools
constructed with the finances. Notable were Kasungu, Karonga.

But it followed that these institutions were already there as they were
constructed by the first President Hastings Kamuzu Banda and his Malawi
Congress Party (MCP) government. Kamuzu relinquished power at the age
of 86 in 1994 through a peaceful democratic process. Muluzi has
announced intention to come back and rule the country despite not being
allowed by laws.

During that time Muluzi government, in trying to add weight to its
claim, ordered Privatization Commission to finance printing of note
books meant for distribution in the new schools.

The notebooks were shown to the representatives of the donors as
evidence that the government had indeed constructed new schools whose
pupils needed note books.

This was enough for the donors to believe that their money was put to good use says the circulation.

Now it was time to inspect the schools and distribute the notebooks.
One of the schools which were inspected was Nsomba in TA Kapeni. When
officials from Privatization drove to that area they did not find any
school in that name.

Traditional leader of the area only told them that the former
president (Bakili Muluzi) when he visited there, in one of his
political rallies, earmarked the area for a school in that name. But
the school was never constructed. Nsomba was just one of tens of

Muluzi, a primary school graduate ruled Malawi from 1994 and
stepped down in 2004 at the expiry of his mandatory term but is
fighting constitution to allow him rule again from 2009.

The circulation says, last year 2007, Privatization Commission was
still keeping bulks of notebooks which were printed to be distributed
in the 'non existent schools.

Says the circulation which puts Muluzi's credibility in questions as next year's presidential candidate in Malawi.

The circulation says Muluzi had ordered some Privatization officials to
destroy the notebooks in suspicion that they could be used against him.

This kind of debate shows how African people desire their leaders to be trustworthy before they take over offices.

Meanwhile, Malawi public supports the Declaration of Assets law. This
policy mandates all public officers to declare what they have before
assuming offices.

If Africa tolerates suspicious leaders, we risk losing all donors. No donor condones misappropriation of their money.

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