Civil society organisations (CSOs) have given President Lazarus Chakwera 21 days to dismiss all public officers named in the ongoing corruption investigation and judicial proceedings linked to United Kingdom-based businessperson Zuneth Sattar.
The CSOs also want the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) to publish all names under the domestic investigations linked to the businessperson within 21-days, a demand Minister of Justice Titus Mvalo has described as unlawful and having the potential to attract lawsuits through defamation.
The CSOs made the ultimatum in a statement signed by Youth and Society executive director Charles Kajoloweka, Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) chairperson Gift Trapence and National Advocacy Platform (NAP) executive director Benedicto Kondowe as well as Social Accountability and Transparency executive director Willy Kambwandira.
The statement comes against a background of Sattar, whose businesses have procurement contracts with various Malawi Government ministries, departments and agencies, being under investigation in the UK by the National Crimes Agency for allegedly giving bribes to politically-exposed persons in Malawi to benefit from contracts.
The CSOs said: “The President should relieve all persons who are named in all ongoing corruption investigations and judicial proceedings as retention of the same grossly undermines public trust.”
The CSOs also want Mvalo to apologise to Malawians for saying no one in the Tonse Alliance administration was connected to Sattar investigations.
But in an interview yesterday, Mvalo said he will not apologise and insisted that what he said was that the Tonse Alliance government did not issue a contract to Sattar.
He also urged the CSOs to wait for the investigations to be concluded.