By Chancy Namadzunda:
Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) has told Leader of Opposition (LoP) Kondwani Nankhumwa to pay back questionable allowances upon every sitting of the Presidential Taskforce on Covid-19 as well as other Covid- 19 clusters within seven days.
Nankhumwa, a DPP Vice President for the Southern Region, came under fire for receiving Covid-19 allowances whenever Presidential Taskforce met.
This is after the social media has been awash with an allowance breakdown indicating that Nankhumwa has been pocketing K60,000 twice as daily subsistence allowances and fuel allowance.
However, Nankhumwa told the local media that the allegations are politically motivated.
He said it was true that he received the allowances but he does not receive his entitlements of a house or house allowance, fuel and other benefits as Leader of Opposition as it is being alleged.
In a statement signed by HRDC Chairperson Gift Trapence and National Coordinator Luke Tembo, the organization said they re enraged by the recklessness exhibited leaders, especially at this time when it is important that the country uses every available resource to fight the pandemic.
“We are in the fight of our lives. The K3.6 million that Honourable Nankhumwa pocketed could have gone a long in saving the lives of several patients.
“In fact, if the K3.6 million was channelled directly towards the Covid-19 fight, it could have filled 36 oxygen cylinders or bought about 16 flowmeters, both of which are critical for the survival of Covid-19 patients. We can only wonder how many lives could have been saved by the K3.6 million Honourable Nankhumwa pocked.
“While our focus is on Nankhumwa due to the fact that he is the only one whose allowances have been ‘leaked’, we are aware that there are several more culprits in this Covid-19 allowance scam. In light of this, we demand that government should release all the Covid-19 expenditure reports to Malawians,” reads part of the statement.