The National Anti-Corruption Alliance (NACA) on Wednesday 26th February,2020 engaged members of parliament specifically the Legal Affairs Committee (LAC) and Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of Parliament to discuss ways of strengthening collaboration in the fight against corruption and money laundering in Malawi. This becomes a second meeting after the first one in September, 2019. The meeting which was aimed at building partnership in the fight against serious and organised corruption drew 50 members of parliament.
During the meeting, Members of Parliament (MPs) complained that cases of corruption are still rising despite the country having the Anti-Corruption Bureau and Financial Intelligent Authority (FIA) which was established to deal with corruption. Members of parliament noted that there are people who have built big houses and have bought expensive cars in a short time but the FIA and ACB are failing to trace the source of money
Speaking on her part, Former Director of Finance Intelligence Authority(FIA) Atuweni Juwayeyi-Agbermodji said some people who steal large amounts of money in Malawi build their houses in places such as rural areas where it is difficult for the FIA to reach and as such, it undermines its work.
She further conceded that the MPs are the ones that make laws that govern our country so engaging them in the fight against corruption will help a lot because there are some that need to be amended that can also assist FIA and ACB in the fight against corruption and also money laundering.
Taking his part during the meeting, chairperson of the National Anti-Corruption Alliance Moses Mkandawire said alliance is engaging Public Accounts Committee(PAC) and Legal Affairs Committee(LAC) because Parliament plays a critical law in terms of providing oversight functions.
“In terms of laws, there are number of gaps that have been identified and that’s why we would want to work with PAC and LAC on behalf of Parliament so we can sit down and scrutinize existing gaps in the efforts to fight against corruption. In that way we can strengthen the fight against serious corruption,” said Mkandawire.
On his part, chairperson of the Legal Affairs Committee Ken Kandodo said the MPs were told about the state of corruption in the country and the improvements that have been made in laws to help in reducing corruption in Malawi. “There is an intention that we may have a formalized arrangement between Parliament and CSOs on the issue in order to reduce corruption in Malawi”, said Kandodo. Kandodo further added that the MPs also had an opportunity to see how some of the laws have been implemented in Malawi.
During this engagement, the alliance presented its assessment report on the effectiveness of the accountability institutions. The alliance and members of parliament have since drafted terms of reference which will guide the parties in the collaborative work in the fight against serious and organised Corruption. The engagement has since built a startup rapoll which will see the two parties entering into a memorandum of understanding.
The National Anti-Corruption Alliance is a movement comprised of CHRR, Church and Society of Synod of Livingstonia, Malawi Law society and Youth and Society. Together they have teamed up to contribute towards the eradication of corruption in Malawi. So far the alliance is using four major approaches which include litigation, performance tracking, civic awareness and advocacy. The alliance is coordinated by the Center for Human Rights and Rehabilitation.