Former Inspector General of Police Lexten Kachama yesterday continued testifying in the police food rations case at the High Court in Lilongwe.
Justice Annabel Mtalimanja is hearing the matter, in which the State is accusing businessman Zameer Karim and two others (one deceased) of swindling the Malawi Government in excess of K2.7 billion.
In his testimony, Kachama observed that there were two different contracts and “it was hard for him to tell which contract the court was referring to.”
The former IG brought documents showing that one of the contracts between Malawi Police Service (MPS) and Pioneer Investments Limited was worth K2.125 billion while the other was valued at K2.34 billion.
He said the two contracts had the same reference number and were for the supply of 500 000 food ration packs.
Kachama also brought documents showing invoices from Pioneer Investments Limited to MPS and for each invoice number, two different invoices were made.
The invoices carrying the same invoice number had different amounts and different dates:
• Invoice number 0112 is dated August 11 2015 with a sum of K268 136 200 while the other is dated September 7 2015 with a sum of K300 759 662.
• Invoice number 0113 is dated August 13 2015 with a sum of K335 170 500 while the other is dated October 14 2015 with a sum of K346 342 850.
• Invoice number 0114 is dated August 17 2015 with a sum of K201 102 300 while the other is dated October 26 2015 with a sum of K696 149 128.
“The amounts are quite different. The dates are also different,” he said.
The former IG also observed that the other invoices were made after a letter of confirmation of delivery had been written. He went on to present a letter from the office of the Inspector General to the Secretary to Treasury which was communicating the completion of the contract for supply and delivery of 500 000 ration packs but also adjustment of the contract value to K2 793 087 500.
The letter was signed by former director of finance the late Innocent Botomani.
Kachama also presented letters from companies where Pioneer Investments Limited was buying goods. The letters which were advising Pioneer Investments Limited about the rise in prices of goods, came after MPS wrote Secretary to Treasury about completion of contract and contract adjustment.
From the documents the former IG also observed that conditions in the contract were that prices would not be adjusted but in the event of a need for adjustment, it should be five percent but Pioneer Investments Limited sought 20 percent.
However, the lawyers asked for clear copies of voucher’s as the ones in the court documents had words that could not be read.
The judge asked the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) to source copies that are clear.
She adjourned the case to today when Kachama will continue testifying.
ACB arrested Karim, Botomani and Kachingwe in 2018 in connection with the ration packs contract.
The three were later granted court bail.