he Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA), in collaboration with the Malawi Police Service, on Friday arrested
Chihana, the valuer of former president late Bingu wa Mutharika’s property, for alleged tax evasion offences.
The property evaluator and entrepreneur was picked in Lilongwe for being suspected of evading tax for his several companies amounting to about K1.3 billion (US$2.9 million).
Chihana’s arrest comes barely three months after the tax collecting body took away his computers and files in a six-hour raid of his offices in Lilongwe.
In a statement issued by MRA yesterday, Chihana was arrested on suspicion that his companies have not been remitting Value Added Tax (VAT) to the body since 2009.
“He is also suspected to have smuggled several motor vehicles into the country without paying applicable customs duties. The estimated amount of taxes and duties is at K1.34 billion,” reads the statement.
Among others, Chihana also owns Vikawu Trust, Steers Auctioneers and Estate Agency, New Chikale Beach, YMW International Transport/Bus Services Limited, Limex Limited, Prudential Consultants and Dutch Contractors.
Nation on Sunday could not ascertain, as we went to press, whether Chihana was still in police custody or had been granted bail.
When contacted national police deputy spokesperson said he had no information on the matter and referred the paper to his boss Rhoda Manjolo who could not pick up her phone after several attempts.