The Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) has arrested former Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) deputy commissioner-general Roza Mbilizi and two others for allegedly abusing former president Peter Mutharika taxpayer identification number.
The others, are former MRA customs and excise manager Fredrick Mpeusa and deputy commissioner, responsible for enforcement and operations Abigail Kawamba.
In a statement issued on Thursday and signed by ACB spokesperson Egrita Ndala, she said the arrests follow an allegation the bureau received on July 7 2020 that some individuals were abusing the former president’s.
Reads the statement in part: “The investigation which commenced in August, 2020 established that the three were facilitating duty free clearance of various imported goods under CPC 418 belonging to former president.
“They are likely to be charged with abuse of office contrary to Section 25B (1) as read with Section 34 of the Corrupt Practices Act and neglect of duty contrary to Section 121 of the Penal Code.”
Ndala on Thursday declined to give more detail on the arrests, saying the information published in the statement is what she only had.
But she said the bureau is expected to interview the three this morning before taking them to court in the afternoon.
Mbilizi is also answering charges in a similar case alongside Mutharika’s former private bodyguard Norman Chasale, former director of State residences Peter Mukhito and businessperson Ahmed Mohammed Chunara and his son Mohammed Chunara, for allegedly importing about 2 050 bags of cement using Mutharika’s.
In April this year, the State revised value of money suspected to have been involved in the cement import case from K3.5 billion to K6.2 billion, excluding penalties, following the arrest of Ahmed Mohammed Chunara.
Amended court documents from the Lilongwe Magistrate’s Court to the High Court of Malawi show that between November 2018 and December 2019, Chunara is alleged to have imported 1 250 770 bags of cement duty-free on the basis that it was for Mutharika’s personal use.
The court documents further show that Chunara’s transactions allegedly evaded a payment of K3.2 billion in customs duty to MRA.
The law allows the President and the Vice-President, among other public officers, to import some items for personal use duty-free.