President Lazarus Chakwera says his government will break the cartel of politicians and politically connected Asian-Malawian businesspersons which control billions of taxes using a flawed system of awarding government contracts.
The Malawi leader said this in a statement on Saturday which was broadcast on public broadcaster MBC.
Chakwera mentioned the concertation of government contracts in the hands of a few business enterprises as a form of greed which his government wants to do away with.
“For 25 years a small cartel consisting of politicians and politically connected Asian-Malawian businesspersons has conspired to control billions of our taxes by hoarding most government contracts and inflating the prices of goods and services acquired by the state,” said Chakwera.
He added that controlling officers in government ministries, departments and agencies enables this by letting businesses submit multiple bids under different companies for single tender.
The Malawi leader further said that this practice leads to large businesses winning most contracts while small businesses are left out.
He also described the conduct as a form of theft because money is concentrated in the hands of a few businesses.
He added that the conduct has damaged the relationship between indigenous Malawians and Malawians of origin in the private sector.
“This cannot go on. We cannot continue to run a system of contracts that takes tax money from the majority of indigenous Malawians and channel most of into the minority Asian community through a rigged system of monopolizing government contracts,” said Chakwera.
He further said that his administration will build a new system by first conducting an audit of the contract awarding system and procurement system.
“Come what may, the shackles of this greed will be broken,” said Chakwera.
Chakwera then assured Malawians that his administration will lead the fight against corruption but he also urged Malawians to take a role in ending the vice.