CDEDI on Chakwera's neck over Chizuma arrest

  • President institutes inquiry

Centre for Democracy and Economic Development Initiatives (CDEDI), has challenged President Dr. Lazarus Chakwera to explain to Malawians and the international community, on whether or not his government has abandoned the Anti-Corruption drive.

This follows the arrest of the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) Director General Martha Chizuma on allegations that she has broken the oath of secrecy.

Chakwera, who was scheduled to meet Chizuma as she is part of an National Integrity Committee sid he would like to see an inquiry into the arrest.

He gave instructions that any wrongdoers who have abused their office in this incident should be held accountable. 

"We must maintain our resolve and send a message to those who think they can intimidate us into submission and slow us down in our fight for a corruption-free Malawi. 

"We are not afraid and we will not stop fighting," Chakwera said as the Ministry of Justice suspended Director of Public Prosecution, Steven Kayuni.

The arrest comes just days after Chizuma took a bold step to arrest the Vice President Saulos Chilima, who is also the President for the UTM Party, a major partner in the Tonse Alliance government, in connection to the alleged Zuneth Sattar corruption scandal.

Sylvester Namiwa, Executive Director for CDEDI said: "At the time Malawians expected the ACB to replicate the gesture to Malawi Congress Party (MCP), another major alliance partner, Malawians woke up to the news of the ACB Director’s arrest. To put it blatantly, President Chakwera and his MCP are creating an impression that Chizuma only had one mission to accomplish, that is to finish off Dr. Chilima and his UTM politically"

Namiwa said the act smacks double standards in the way Chakwera handles matters of national importance.

"Malawians vividly recall that in January 2022, the President told the whole world that he had forgiven the ACB Director for what she did and said in the contentious leaked phone conversation.

"Is president Chakwera an outright liar? Or is he perhaps someone can just be pushed around?

Malawians ought to know that both the ACB and the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) report to the same office, that of the President who is aso the appointing authority.

Namiwa said the arrests means, there is no way Dr. Steve Kayuni can make a move that has not been sanctioned by President Chakwera, and neither can a high profile official be summoned for questioning in a high profile case without the consent of the DPP.