Two senior officers working at Chikwawa District Hospital have been interdicted following their involvement in the mattress scandal that happened last month.
The two senior officers interdicted are the hospital administrator, Moses Jere and Senior stores clerk Clement Kapesi, are suspected to have had a hand in the theft of 28 mattresses worth K1.5 million at the hospital. The two who are currently on court bail are answering a charge of theft by public servant.
Speaking in an interview Thursday, District Commissioner Fred Movete confirmed the interdiction but refused to comment much as the issue is still in court.
“The matter is going through legal and disciplinary procedures. However, I cannot divulge much information as the case is still ongoing and on the other hand issues of disciplinary are confidential,” he said.
Ministry of Health spokesperson Adrian Chikumbe said in an interview as a line ministry, they are following the issue with keen interest
“Due to decentralisation that led to dissolution of powers, all disciplinary issues are now being handled by the office of the District Commissioner. However, we are an interested party as a line ministry and we are following the issue with keen interest,” he explained.
In an earlier interview, Chikwawa Police Station Spokesperson Foster Benjamin, indicated that twelve officers from the hospital were being interrogated over the issue. Police have since recovered about 25 mattresses.
A visit to the hospital by Nation Online crew a week ago revealed that some patients sleep on bare floor in most of the wards due to lack of mattresses.
The Malawi Health Equity Network (Mhen) Executive Director George Jobe demanded an immediate dismissal of the officers to serve as a lesson for others.