The country’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs has disclosed that government has unpaid invoices of over K854 million out of a K2.9 billion budget for the 41st SADC Summit held in Lilongwe in August last year.
Money owed to suppliers include about K600 million for purchase of VVIP and VIP vehicles and about K60 million for decorations.
This is according to a preliminarily financial report for the SADC summit which was held from 9th to 18th August 2021 at the Bingu International Convention Center (BICC) in the capital Lilongwe.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs through the report which was released on Saturday April 30th, says initially government budgeted K4 billion to cover for the summit, but it was later trimmed to K2.9 billion.
The statement indicates that the trimming was necessitated by financial constraints but still more, months after the event government, says it owes suppliers for the summit unpaid invoices amounting to K854,776,815.00.
Of other big unpaid invoices, the expenditure report shows that government is yet to pay K582,854,250 for purchasing of VVIP and VIP vehicles, K105,508,100 for transportation costs and K59,414,717 for decorations.
The report further indicates that so far, the Ministry of Finance has provided 1.9 billion kwacha in last year’s and this year’s budgets to pay for the services, and the balance is currently at K1 billion.
Meanwhile, the ministry says government will pay for the invoices once it receives funds from the ministry of finance which has currently provided 1.9 billion kwacha in last year’s and this year’s budgets to pay for the services.
“Members of the public may also be interested to know that the unpaid invoices amounting to K854,776,815.00 has been audited and certified by the Auditor General as at 16th March, 2022. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs will pay the outstanding invoices once it is funded by the Ministry of Finance,” reads part of the report.
The release of the SADC summit financial report comes barely days after some concerned citizens demanded the release of it and the Malawi president Dr Lazarus Chakwera few days ago made a directive on the same.