Outspoken Rumphi East member of Parliament (MP) Kamlepo Kalua has described a Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) raid at his house in Nkolokosa and his son’s place in Namiwawa, Blantyre on Wednesday as political persecution.
Kalua, one of the fierce critics of government, especially in Parliament, had his house and that of his son, Penjani, popularly known as Ghetto King Fredokiss, raided by MRA officers accompanied by heavily armed police officers.
The legislator is suspected to have evaded tax, an accusation he dismissed, describing the exercise as part of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) administration’s tactics to politically persecute critics.
Kalua’s daughter, Hilda, yesterday told The Nation that the family was alerted by neighbours around 11am on Wednesday after they noticed an unspecified number of police officers and MRA officials within their premises.
She said the police were heavily armed and wanted to break their gate in Nkolokosa as they were assuming that Kalua had two houses, one in Namiwawa and another in Nkolokosa. However, Kalua’s wife clarified that her husband only owns one house.
Said the daughter: “My mom was in Chileka and they [police] followed her where she was and tried to force her sign search documents.”
National Police spokesperson James Kadadzera distanced the police from the issue yesterday, saying the police officers went to provide security.
In a telephone interview yesterday, Kalua said the developments are political intimidation, harassment and political witch-hunting by the current DPP government.
He said the Mercedes Benz in question was bought by his son in 2013 and was cleared by Parliament in August 2014.
Said Kalua: “As for the VX, it was locally bought in 2008 by my son and that vehicle was bought by an Indian in 1997 at Toyota Malawi. So, where did I import these vehicles?”
Government spokesperson Nicholas Dausi dismissed Kalua’s accusations, saying MRA was just carrying out its duties.
Yesterday, MRA officials also went to search the residence of Kalua around 10 o’clock in the morning but were sent back by family members as they had no search warrant.
MRA director of corporate affairs Stephen Kapoloma said contrary to what people are saying, only four to five police officers were present during the operation as per requirement.
He said the documents that were retrieved during the operation were not for the two vehicles.
“The cars are not in the system and were registered as Vanette contrary to what honourable Kalua is saying,” Kapoloma said. n