K600 million stolen at Malawi gaming authority

Alide and Bakuwa

Senior management at state-owned Malawi Gaming and Lotteries Authority (MAGLA) opened a bank account at FDH Bank which they used to steal about K600 million from the authority

This has been revealed in two published reports  by the Malawi Voice online publication and The Nation.

The Malawi Voice report has named Director of Finance, Administration and Human Resources Henri Bakuwa, Director of Legal Services and Company Secretary Ofwa Alide and former Chief Executive Officer Foster Mulumbe as the people involved in the plunder.

MAGLA used to operate as Malawi Gaming Board (MGB) and National Lotteries Board (NLB) before the two were legally merged this year by an act of Parliament. The authority issues gaming and lottery licences, carries out inspections of gaming machines and games and monitors lottery draws to ensure fairness.

MAGLA charges fees for its services to finance its activities and part of the revenue is used to promote of tourism, donated to development projects and paid as dividend to the Government.

Under Mlumbe, National Lotteries Board had an account with National Bank. Senior officials connived to open Malawi Gaming Board account with FDH Bank without approval from the board. Since both companies were under same management, the employees used the FDH account to siphon K593 million from the National Bank account.

According to the Malawi Voice report, on 18 September 2019, there was a transfer to the MGB FDH account from NLB NBM account amounting to K20,092,185. Similar transfers of K20 million from NBM account to FDH account were made on 31 October 2019, 15 November 2019, 12 December 2019, 16 January 2020, 31 January 2020, 5 June 2020 and 22 June 2020.

“On 21 July 2020, a total of K30 million was transferred to the FDH account followed by another transfer from a fixed deposit-1475000030085 of K15 million on 5 October 2020. Some of the huge transfers were done on 30 December 2020 amounting to K55 million and on 17 February 2021 a transfer of K100 million was effected,” Malawi Voice reported.

Bakuwa also withdrew amounts from the FDH account including K15.8 million on 27 May 2020, K1.3 million on 1 June 2020, K15 million on 16 June 2020, K9.3 million on 22 June 2020, K8.5 million on 1 December 2020, K6 million on 12 October 2020 and K7.6 million on 10 February 2021.

Mlumbe, the former CEO, managed to withdraw K24, 763,485 on 22 July 2020,  K6 million on 31 December 2020, K3.6 million on 19 February 2021, and K5 million on 24 February 2021.

Another senior employee involved in the fraud is Ofwa Alide,  wife to High Court Judge Jabbar Alide.

On 4 June 2020, Alide allegedly used cheque number 00006 to withdraw  K600,469. before making another withdrawal on 10 September 2020 amounting to K741,714.00 using cheque number 0000015.

“Alide’s biggest withdrawal was done on 27 October 2020 amounting to K3,876,893.42 through cheque number 0000020 before withdrawing K3.6 million on 12 March 2021 through cheque number 0000035,” Malawi Voice reported.

The senior managers also gave cheques to some employees so that they could get in on the act.

On 4 June 2020, one employee cashed K600, 469 through cheque number 000005 while on 3 June 2020 another employee cashed K576,876. The two cheques were labelled entertainment allowance.

On 19 February 2021, K1.8 million was withdrawn from the FDH account by another MGM employee.

“In general, the amounts moved from NLB through an account of MGB at FDH then finally to the beneficiaries. Malawi Gaming Board further noted that the amounts to the individuals were done even when there travel restrictions due to the covid019 pandemic,” reads the report.

MAGLA board chairperson Bernard Ndau confirmed to The Nation that the authority launched the forensic audit.

Meanwhile, Bakuwa and Alide are on suspension following the revelations from the forensic report. The two refused to comment when contacted by The Nation.


Follow us on Twitter:



  1. I see no change in our country, we expected change koma ayi ndithu corruption every department of government. Churches too are corrupt only that it’s not reported. So who will help end this. The world is going to the end.

  2. Why should anyone be surprised? For all these stories that are being reported of theft, looting of public funds, corruption – how many more cases are going un-reported? What is the true extent of theft and looting in this country? Can anyone guess? What will be justice? Pay a small fine or spend a few months in jail and then go scot free. All this money that is stolen, that is eaten by these individuals – will it ever be recovered? Your guess is as good as mine.

Comments are closed.