Gerald Viola gets suspended sentence


A court in Lilongwe has handed a three year suspended sentence to former National Food Reserve Agency (NFRA) deputy chief executive officer Gerald Viola who was convicted of misuse of office over the awarding of a K3.3 billion contract.

Principal Resident Magistrate Viva Nyimba has handed the three year suspended sentence to Viola today.

Businessperson Chrispin Chingola, who was found guilty of influencing a public officer to misuse a public office, has also been handed a three year suspended sentence.

The two will not serve the three year sentence if they do not commit any crime of dishonesty in the next two years.

Nyimba in his judgment said he has taken into consideration that the convicts are first offenders and that they did not get any economic benefit from the crime.

Viola was arrested by the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) in October, 2020 for awarding a contract to Chingola’s company called Missies Trading to supply 10,000 metric tons of maize worth K3.3 billion to NFRA.

Viola awarded the contract to the company without involving the Internal Procurement and Disposal of Assets Committee.

Viola served as presidential spokesperson in the Peter Mutharika administration before being appointed as deputy boss of NFRA.

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