Janet Chikaya-Banda, Malawi’s solicitor general and secretary for justice benefitted

LILONGWE (Malawi NewsNow)-Corruption appears to be the order of the day in the Peter Mutharika-led Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) government as some officers at the Malawi Law Commission (MLC) are said to have given themselves two retirement packages contrary to the civil service regulations and procedures.

This comes after government in 2009 directed that employees at the commission be on contributory pension scheme.

The development at the Commission saw employees retire first before adopting the new pension scheme thereby getting two retirement packages in the end.

The documents in our possession reveal that other former and current employees received double retirement packages namely Solicitor General Janet Banda, (former Chief Law Reform Officer), Commission’s  Controller of Human Resources Management Dina Migochi, Principal HMR officer Steven Mijoni, Chief Accountant Patricia Mwathengere, Senior Personal Secretary Tabu Moleni, former director of administrations Lovemore Winga.

For instance Migochi pocketed MK86, 455.85 gratuity dated May 16, 2001 for the period 10/11/86 to 23/06/99 meaning that she joined the service on November 10, 1986 and retired on June 23, 1999 as started working with the commission.

The latter’s voucher shows that she has worked for 22 years instead of 13 years and received MK23, 266, 710.00. Migochi is said to have been paid cheque number 315785 and voucher number 030PV4008430.

Solicitor General Banda got MK18, 488, 547.50 through cheque number315776 for the period 1993 to 2009, meaning that the period from 1993 to about 2000 when she retired first is also included.

Mijoni received MK19, 775, 345.74 net through cheque number 315800 for the period to September 2009 meaning that the period from 1980 to 1999 was included.

Mwathengere pocketed MK21, 434, 509.40 through cheque number 315833 for the period between 1982 to September 2009, meaning that she included the period she got already paid from 1992 to 2009.

Moleni received MK10, 381, 186.16 through cheque number 315756 for the period 1992 to 2009 while Winga who left the commission got MK16, 975, 221.25 for the period 1993 to 2009.

Migochi who is one of the beneficiaries in the pension scam told the Malawi News that the matter in question was in court seeking legal intervention adding that he would not comment further.

She however conceded the anomaly arguing that many employees were affected and that the matter was to be resolved by the Accountant General.

Meanwhile Auditor General Stephenson Kamphasa described what happened at the commission as wrong and warned the employees to refund the money.

Kamphasa disclosed that his office will be going to the commission for audit hinting that it was un-procedural for a civil servant to get two pensions from the civil service.

The double pension packages scam at the Malawi Law Commission comes barely days after double allowances were given to officials at Mzuzu City Council which saw a whopping MK1.5 million go down the drain. In as much as Malawi civil servants are generally corrupt, corruption seems to get worse by the day in the Peter Mutharika-led DPP government owing to the fact that Mutharika shields corrupt political cronies from prosecution in his government and public bodies.