The Public Accounts Committee (Pac) of Parliament has accused the government of blocking the committee’s probe into the alleged misappropriation of K236 billion.
The figure was initially pegged at K577 billion.
Pac Chairperson, Alekeni Menyani, made the accusations in Parliament yesterday in response to Government Chief Whip Henry Mussa’s pronouncement that the issue was in the hands of the committee.
Mussa made the statement in his attempt to discredit the speech by Leader of Opposition in Parliament and MCP president Lazarus Chakwera.
“If they have nothing to hide, I challenge them to present resources for the committee to go and sit down and bring a report to the House,” Menyani said.
But Speaker of Parliament, Richard Msowoya, said the issue of K236 million Cashgate lies solely in the hands of the committee and other Members of Parliament and Malawians are looking up to the committee on the issue.
Msowoya said he knew that money is a problem but, through his office, the committee should make a submission for facilitation of the process.
Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development, Goodall Gondwe, rose and asked if it was in order for Chakwera and Menyani to talk about K577 billion when it was made clear that such a figure was just a preliminary forecast.
“Number two; is it in order that we should be talking about the audit of K236 billion when we know that, in fact an audit is being undertaken at Nao [National Audit Office] and that we are likely to have a report before the end of year.
“That has been stated and we know the auditor who is auditing K236 billion and, in fact, if you look at your budget, government did contribute K500 million. So, it is not a question of government not contributing,” Gondwe said.