The Office of the Ombudsman has ruled in favour of former second deputy Speaker Clement Chiwaya in a case he accused Parliament of failing to process change of ownership for his official car despite paying the purchase price.
The former Mangochi Central legislator filed a complaint at the Office of the Ombudsman on February 16 2021.
The inquiry learnt that Chiwaya failed to insure the car as it was still in the government’s name and that things got complicated when the car, which was modified to suit his physical disability, was involved in an accident.
In her determination dated May 31 2021, former Ombudsman Martha Chizuma said it was maladiminstration for the National Assembly to fail to process change of ownership for Chiwaya whose tenure of office spanned between 2014 and 2019.
She said: “It is completely unacceptable that change of ownership for a governmental vehicle should take more than two years to be processed.
“This was a straightforward matter for the respondents to resolve and it should not have incurred such an inordinate delay, especially considering the complainant’s physical incapacity and the changes he needed to do to his motor vehicle.”
Chizuma ordered Parliament Secretariat to assess the value of the car of similar condition Chiwaya was using and that this should be done by June 30 2021.
The Ombudsman further ordered Parliament to assess the cost of modifying the vehicle to suit the complainant’s condition by the same June 30 2021.
“The respondents [Parliamen] should pay the complainant the total amounts of…compensation for the injustice occasioned to the complainant. This money should be paid by 31st July, 2021,” Chizuma ordered.
In an interview yesterday, Parliament spokesperson Ian Mwenye confirmed that they were in receipt of the Ombudsman’s determination.
He said the institution was studying the content and context.
In the determination, the Ombudsman said it was apparent in the evidence that the complainant did his part of the agreement by confirming his interest to buy the car and indicating the mode of payment which was to be facilitated by the respondents.
She said the problem she noted was the careless manner the change of ownership was handled by Parliament.