By Gauthely Gondola
In sharp contrast to his promise of an olive branch to the former head of state Dr. Joyce Banda, Malawi president Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika has ordered the new Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) Lucas Kondowe, to do whatever he can to have the former President arrested.
Ironically similar move backfired when Mutharika ordered the former ACB boss Rezine Mzikamanda to do the same, and upon being told that there is no evidence against the former president, Mzikamanda was fired from his position.
Sources with Government and ACB have confided to Banthu Times that Mutharika wants Dr. Joyce Banda arrested at all cost whether the evidence is available or not.
“Government has been trying all it could to have JB arrested. Infact they have been meeting the likes of Khumbo Kachali, Ralph Kasambala, Osward Lutepo, Pika Manondo to implicate her. Unfortunately, Kasambala is on record to have turned down the offer while Lutepo is ready if promised that he will walk free.” Said the source.
News reaching Banthu Times indicate that Lutepo has entered a deal to be a state witness and avoid custodial sentence by among other things saying that former President was well aware of the whole cashgate and indeed she has instructed them to steal money from the government.
However, sources within the ACB are very skeptical of the move by Lutepo as up to now there is no evidence linking the former president to Cashgate.
“In fact, Dr. Joyce Banda is not even on the list of the suspects within the Baker Tilly. That is why the government is failing to release the names of the suspects involved. The Government had wished that Joyce Banda would be the main suspect, however, her absence has irked the powers that be to an extent that the new ACB boss has been order to do whatever he can to arrest JB.” Said the source within the ACB
The source further disclosed that even with Lutepo as a witness, it will be very difficult to convict Joyce Banda as all evidence indicate that she is clean of wrong doing.
“So far what we have gathered indicate that while the People’s Party might have indirectly benefit from the cashgate money, there is no direct link between the Cashgate money to Joyce Banda.” Said the source