MCP wants Muluzi’s corruption charges dropped

Malawi Congress Party (MCP) has asked government to drop all corruption charges against former president, Bakili Muluzi.

The party’s Member of Parliament for Kasungu South East, Khumbize Kandodo Chiponda, made a plea today during Parliamentary deliberations.

The former Malawi leader was arrested on 27 July in 2006 on fraud, corruption and theft charges following allegations that he diverted into his personal account $11m (K8 billion at today’s rate) of donor funds.

He maintains his innocence. His United Democratic Front (UDF) described the arrest as politically charged by the then Bingu wa Mutharika administration.

Muluzi, who had stepped down as president after several bids for a third term had embarrassingly failed, hand-picked wa Mutharika to run for president on the UDF ticket. The latter dumped UDF to form Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).

The future of the case remains a mystery after several adjournments.

Speaking today in Parliament, MCP’s Chiponda said the party is calling on government to drop the charges because Muluzi is “the founding father of Malawi’s democracy”.

She also listed Muluzi’s age as another reason.

“Muluzi is old and these charges amount to abuse. We are wasting a lot of public funds by proceeding with the case than what can be gained if government drops the charges. I am therefore calling on government to drop the charges. Mind you, Muluzi is the father of our democracy.”

In a twist of event, MCP’s plea came a few hours after DPP and Muluzi’s UDF announced a working alliance against Malawi Congress Party’s presidential candidate Lazarus Chakwera in the forthcoming presidential elections that Parliament has set for May this year.