The Malawi Energy Regulatory Authority (Mera) board has fired the parastatal’s chief executive officer (CEO) Ralph Kamoto and director of finance Elias Hausi.
The two have been sacked for alleged abuse of office after the authority diverted K2.9 billion from the Price Stabilisation Fund to State produce trader Agricultural Development and Marketing Corporation (Admarc).
Both Kamoto and Hausi confirmed the development in separate interviews yesterday.
Mera board chairperson Bishop Joseph Bvumbwe is reportedly out of the country while deputy chairperson Felicia Kilembe refused to comment on the matter.
“I will not speak on behalf of the board because only the chairperson is mandated to speak on the matter,” said Kilembe.
But Kamoto told The Nation in an interview yesterday that the board wrote him to communicate its decision to fire him from his position. However, he refused to disclose details of the letter.
“The letter has communicated to me the decision of the disciplinary committee and I can confirm they have fired me. But I will not disclose any details, suffice to ask you to request the information you are asking for from the board,” he said.
Kamoto could not immediately say whether he will challenge the decision, insisting that The Nation should speak to the board on the matter.
On his part, Hausi said he was likely going to appeal the decision of the board.
“I have got communication for termination of my contract. I am not considering any legal action at the moment since there is room for appeal against the board’s decision. I will go for the appeal not legal action,” he said.
Mera spokesperson Fitina Khonje, while acknowledging that she was aware of the reports surrounding the dismissal of Kamoto, said she was yet to be officially briefed on the matter.
“My understanding is that the board met and it will communicate its decision to the public next week. It is likely that the last board meeting came up with a final decision, but I am not privileged to its content,” said Khonje.
Finance, Economic Planning and Development Minister Goodall Gondwe yesterday said he was not aware of the decision.
He said he was yet to receive any official communication on the matter.
Kamoto and Hausi were sent on leave in August last year pending investigation after our sister paper Weekend Nation revealed how the authority diverted the funds to be used by Admarc in procuring maize.
Treasury then said it had not been consulted on the matter. It, therefore, asked Admarc to repay the money to Mera.