Mkaka asked to explain his Mercedes Benz


Malawians are calling on Minister of Minister of Natural Resources and Climate Change Eisenhower Mkaka to explain his Mercedes Benz following serious allegations that it was donated to him by business kingpin Zuneth Sattar.

Mkaka in October 2020 announced on his Facebook Page that he had bought the second hand Mercedes Benz at a price of GBP45,000 (over K45 million).

Mkaka who was first appointed cabinet minister on July 8, 2020,  said he ordered the car on July 5, 2020  and a few days later he wrote the Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) to ask for duty-free clearance  which the authority granted.

“I have several sources of income which enabled me to afford this car. At that point, I had been working as an MP for a year. Secondly, in June this year, I announced that my former employers, the First Merchant Bank, compensated me after winning a court case against them. I even announced this here on my Facebook page in June this year when I got the first tranche of the compensation. Thirdly, through my wife, I have been carrying out a business of agricultural commodities for years. All these made me afford to buy the car,” Mkaka posted in October 2020.

The MRA letter Mkaka shared

He also posted a letter which Parliament wrote to MRA seeking freed duty clearance on behalf of Mkaka.

In recent months, there have been revelations that UK based businessperson Zuneth Sattar bribed several Malawian officials including politicians and civil servants. It is alleged that by offering bribes in form of cash of vehicles to 53 public officials, Sattar was awarded 16 contracts worth over K150 billion through which he defrauded Malawians by inflating prices.

A report published by Platform for Investigative Journalism (PIJ) indicates that the UK National Crime Agency, after raiding Sattar’s house, found a document listing vehicles which Sattar had shipped to Malawi.

One of the items on the list, according to PIJ, reads: “On 26th June 2020 – two Mercedes 5350d L AMG registration KT17OAO and FY65LZE to Walvis Bay, [Namibia]. Value of vehicles £22,350 and £22,550.”

The bill of lading at the top, screenshot of PIJ report on bottom left and the MRA document Mkaka shared in 2020

The vehicle’s bill of lading, issued to acknowledge receipt of cargo for shipment, indicates that the vehicle was shipped from Southampton in UK to Walvis Bay in Namibia.

It also shows that the consignee was Eisenhower Nduwa Mkaka of P.O Box 1230, Lilongwe in Malawi. The document has the vehicle’s registration as KT17OAO, the same as one of the Mercedes Benz on the Sattar list.

The chassis number WDD2221322A338705 on the lading bill is also the same one on the MRA document which Mkaka shared in 2020.

A certification for entry of goods duty free signed by Mkaka and dated August 21, 2020 shows that the Minister received  a Mercedes 5350 with chassis number WDD2221322A338705.

Malawians have since demanded explanation from Mkaka.

“If he bought this car with his own money. Bank transaction will be appreciated. If it was a free gift from Zuneth Sattar, he must explain the context. I’m not alleging. I’m only asking based on information in-front of my flat nose,” activist Joshua Chisa Mbele posted on his page.

Commenters agreed, saying Mkaka should provide evidence how he bought the vehicle amid the revelations that it sent to him by Sattar.

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