Low salaries fueling corruption – expert

He might not be a fan of local popular musician Joseph Mkasa’s song “Anenere sakukondwa nayo Salary yawoyo” (Speak for them, they are not happy with their salary) but a Chancellor College based lecturer has observed that low perks are fueling corruption in Malawi.

The sentiments come at a time when authorities have been blaming Malawians for not being patriotic in fight against corruption amid reports of high cases of the malpractice in the country.

Lawrence Mpekasambo: Malawi might lose the fight in corruption.

Malawi leader Peter Mutharika has for several times urged citizens to resist corruption saying it is a block to development.

The concerns have also been shared by various stakeholders including diplomats who expressed worry on the current status of corruption in Malawi.

But a lecturer in the department of philosophy at Chancellor College Lawrence Mpekasambo has faulted government for putting people on moral dilemma due to poor salaries.

Speaking in an interview with Malawi24 during the commemoration of Global Ethics Day in Zomba, Mpekasambo disclosed that Malawi might lose the fight in corruption because of poor salaries to its civil servants.

“Civil servants are poorly paid and worse their salaries are never paid on time which means you are receiving little money at the same time the money does not come on time, now put yourself in a situation where you are working at pharmacy department at the hospital, your little salary is delayed but you have drugs honestly you will sell the drugs to send your children to school.

“It is a climate that is conducive for corruption as innocent people are tempted to begin wrong things they never wanted to do as part of moral conscious because of poor salaries,” said Mpekasambo.

He added further that Malawi needs “ethical leadership” that can address the challenges faced by civil servants to win the battle against corruption.

Commemorated on 18th October, Global Ethics Day provides an opportunity for organizations around the world to hold events on or around this day, exploring the meaning of ethics in international affairs.

The theme of this year’s commemoration centered on “Golden Rule” and Chancellor College philosophy students held a forum to discuss on how they can deal with moral dilemma.





  1. Bodza,corruption is just a ha
    bit influenced by selfishness in order to oppress those who can not pay attention towards bribery,though they can get much they can’t stop.

  2. The poorest is just looking for money just to keep both ends meet, and after asked a bribe, he or she struggles…. but look big people what is on their mind is not all about feeding their stomaches but bigger huge and wider plans; how to finish off projects like building mansions, buying porshy cars, building big renting houses that could cost over K500,000 a month…& u already know cashgaters are big people

  3. Total disagree, in those days the word corruption was not popular, however the Bible said in last days people will be lovers of money lero ndizimenezi lets the Bible be true

  4. Coruption is even higher at the top where they get more money. Check in Mw or elsewhere. Thats where cashgate is more pronounced. Thats where they create more illegal allowances. No person gets satisfied wth money. We all desire more money. Its human nature. I disagree wth the article.

  5. Coruption is even higher at the top where they get more money. Check in Mw or elsewhere. Thats where cashgate is more pronounced. Thats where they create more illegal allowances. No person gets satisfied wth money. We all desire more money. Its human nature. I disagree wth the article.

  6. That is some how true. But if we can spend some minutes scrutinizing this issue, we can see that this can be not 100% true. See how our political leaders do, they steal our money yet they have lots of bank accounts full millions of kwachas. That can b some how true or force. Corruption here in Malawi is rampant and we will never quit because most of these corruptionists come from poor family backgrounds. e

  7. Munthu Wakuda Anada ndi ntima womwe, ngakhale ma pulezident amapanganso ziphuphu ndi chifukwa Africa Izafa Yosauka, Nkhani Si Kuchepa Kwa Malipiro Koma Ndioneke Bwana Ndine,basiii

  8. wochita ziphuphu ndi wa ziphuphu ngakhale atamalandira vindalama vambirimbiri maka sangasiye muluzi amalanfira ndalama zingati pamwezi nanga akuyankha milandu yanji?papa Zuma apo patsidya la zambezi amalandira ndalama zingati pa mwezi nanga ndi milandu yotani akuyembekedzera kukayankha milandu wa ziphuphu ndi waziphuphu basi no matter kuti akulandira zochuluka

    1. But for a policeman who earn less salary can let me hook off for a bribe. Even at broader if you bribe they will not check. That’s how they make bonuses. Police, customs, migration, traffic cops even at hospital to get a good treatment you will bribe. Who can someone reject bribe when family slept empty stomach. For politician its greedy

  9. That’s a total lie those who are involved in corruption are already rich people while others are are not really rich but financially stable but still they are involved in corruption that means its like part of their day today life they have passion for corruption they can’t do anything good without corruption its a greedy spirit

    1. I dont agree with you. Poor salaries is what is fuelling corruption and theft in public service. Those that dont engage in corrupt practices are not necessarirly saints but they dont have access to due to the nature of their work. Compare teachers and other public servants; you can not conclusively say that teachers are less corrupt than malawi police, MRA or immigration officers. It is absurd to entrust million worthy of property or items into a lowly paid public servant. For your information, Majority of public servants get home with a salary of less than 70,000 in a month and we expect them to religious

    2. nanga gulu la achina chaponda aja ndi low salary’so? achina chiphwiyo chija..? i do agree,its their passion to corruption man

    3. Ur 100% Correct bro,corruption its habit not because of low sarally even if they increase their sarally with 100% they will still do corrupt,becouse their mind set is already corrupted,

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  11. Simply corruption is devil’s spirit…. Check even in USA corruption is high so it’s not becoz of low salaries Mr lecturer…

  12. komadi na kumalawi malipilo amakhala ngati akupatsa mwana kuti akadyele ku sukulu chonsecho ndi lecture kkkkk..

  13. this is really true..you cant fight corruption when you give poor salaries to employees, being in Government sector or Private Sector.
    Imagine the situation where foreign companies that are investing in Malawi they always come with good packages but government will always say no you cant be paying such huge salaries to Malawian.whats that? how can the countyry develop like that. let the company pay better salaries if the economy is to grow..people should have money so that the can develop the country and increase econnomic activities such as business and a lot of investment in various displine taking advantage of abnormal profits that the businesses and companies will be making in short term and normal profit in long term.More money circulation in economy will boost business activities hence more investment and more job creation, inflation will automatically drop do to increased supply of goods and services becouse of investments that will be comming in due to increased demand.

    in nuts shell lets pay better salaries to empolyees at all levels being in goverment all private sector if the economy is to grow.

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