Latest Arrest in Lilongwe’s Quest to Stop Graft

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Police in Malawi have arrested two former cabinet ministers and a former reserve bank governor over the sale of a state-owned bank. The government says the arrests are aimed at cleaning up corruption but the opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) says the arrests are a form of political persecution.

Former finance minister Joseph Mwanamveka was arrested Tuesday evening while former local government minister Ben Phiri and former reserve bank governor Dalitso Kabambe turned themselves over to police Wednesday.

Police say the three are facing charges of abuse of office and fraud. The arrests come two days after Malawi’s attorney general told reporters that the government is investigating the sale of Malawi Savings Bank and also issues that led the IMF to withhold its Extended Credit Facility or (ECF) to Malawi. Police spokesman Kadadzera says investigations revealed that Mwanamveka and Kabambe falsified some documents in an attempt to convince the International Monetary Fund (IMF) that Malawi was meeting terms needed to use the ECF.

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