Government took katapila for fuel – Chihana

By Robert Mukhori

The opposition, Alliance for Democracy (Aford) President Enoch Chakufwa Chihana has disclosed that the government of outgoing President Reverend Lazarus Chakwera borrowed money from an international bank and used this year’s tobacco sales as collateral for the loan.

The firebrand politician Chihana was speaking at Mponela Trading Centre in Dowa where he addressed a political rally on Sunday.

In his address, Chihana said that he felt sorry for farmers in the country who despite selling their tobacco at the auction floors, they are not being paid their money.

He said that he has a reason for the nonpayment of the money to the farmers and that he challenged government to come out in the open to contradict him if his version wasn’t correct.

In his open disclosure, Chihana said that the Malawi government didn’t have money to pay for fuel importations so they approached the DTB Bank of Kenya and borrowed money in form of a loan facility.

According to Chihana, the Malawi government committed this year’s tobacco sales as collateral.

He therefore said that consequently, as the tobacco is being sold at the auction floors, the money realized goes straight to DTB Bank to service the facility.

The Aford leader said as a result, government has no money to pay the farmers who are selling their tobacco at the floors.

Almost four days after Chihana made these revelations the government through the Ministry of Information or Finance has not dismissed this version made by the opposition leader.

This is the first time in the history of Malawi that tobacco farmers are selling their produce at the auction floors but not get paid for what is due to them.

Meanwhile, there are reports of fuel shortages in most filling stations in the country starting with the capital, Lilongwe where long queues of vehicles are evident.

Fuel shortages and high commodity prices have been a character of the Reverend Lazarus Chakwera administration in the last four years he has been in power.

Malawians tired of Pastor Chakwera have vowed to kick him out of power and his notorious Malawi Congress in elections to be held in September next year

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