Some members of the Malawi Defence Force (MDF) brass band in Lilongwe have cried foul over the trimming of their out of duty station allowance from K6 000 (about $24) to K300 (about $1.2).
The band members normally get this allowance when they travel to perform at functions presided over by the Head of State.
But MDF public information office official Lieutenant Paul Chiphwanya on Thursday asked the soldiers to present their grievances officially to management. He said the army follows government set conditions of service when paying allowances.
The MDF band plays the National Anthem and fanfare at presidential functions.
Three members of the MDF band last week confided in The Nation that they were surprised to get K300 daily allowance when they travelled to Blantyre in April to see President Joyce Banda off on her trip to South Africa, Liberia and Nigeria.
â€œWe were paid K600 for two nights, but nobody queried the amount. On 16th July, we were also surprised to be paid K400 daily allowance when we travelled to Blantyre for the occasion of the presentation of foreign ambassadorsâ€™ credentials to the President.
â€œBetween 19th and 22nd July, we were in Mzuzu for the July 20 memorial prayers and other presidential engagements. We were also paid K300 daily allowance,â€ said one member.
Another soldier said previously they were paid K6 000 daily allowance even when they were given accommodation and meals at MDF sites in Mzuzu and Blantyre.
The Nation has, however, learnt that MDF band members are either entitled to K6 000 daily subsistence allowance when they find their own accommodation and meals or K300 daily field allowance when the office gives them accommodation and meals.
Chiphwanya said he had no information that the soldiers were getting K6 000 allowance even after being given accommodation and meals at army sites.