10 January 2018

Malawi: Cashgate Prisoner Lutepo Writes Book On Malawi Corruption

Photo: Katie C. Lin/IPS
Former president Joyce Banda.

Osward Lutepo, who is currently serving a 11 year jail term on Cashgate related conviction, is set to release his first edition of his planned series of what he calls 'My way of writing' series titled 'Corruption', Nyasa Times has been told.

According to his brother Edward, who seemed up beat with the upcoming book , his brother who declared himself as an ambassador against crime and corruption is going to use this book to launch his fight against crime and corruption mission.

"As his family we are fully in support of his mission because together with our incarcerated brother we are very much concerned with the reports of continued increase in corrupt cases making rounds regardless of the embarrassing experience that our brother and our whole family have been going through due to our brother's alleged involvement in the Cashgate scam," Edward Lutepo told Nyasa Times in an exclusive interview.

"To our brother and all of us it was and has been our anticipation that looking at what Cashgate suspects have been going through no one would really want to be involved in such malpractices at all yet these cases seem not to abate at all and this is the reason why we are fully in support of our brother," said Edward.

He further said that Osward was moved with the "shame and embarrassment" which he had gone through to declare himself as an ambassador against crime and corruption to make sure that those who would care to listen to his anti-crime and anti-corruption messages should not end up like him.

He said Osward's bitter lessons make him feel bad when others still want to be involved in corrupt activities.

"That is why he is launching his anti-crime and anti-corruption mission now through the release of this book on corruption," said Edward.

According to Edward, besides the book, Osward will be conducting public and private lectures, making presentations on corruption, what it is, how it affects various activities, how it can be traced, and how it can be prevented.

He said there are many planned anti corruption activities in store. Key to them is prevention mechanisms.

According to Edward the book is "multinational" meaning that it has been written to suit all countries worldwide and that his elder brother's mission is across the globe.

It is expected that the book will be available by next month at 'a low price for all to afford'. The first version will be in English followed by other languages, according to Edward.

"In the book Osward is using himself and his own personal experience for examples. Experiences that only a few can accept to be revealed during their life time have been laid bare for all to learn from. The book is at an advanced stage with editors," said Edward.

He said that the book might as well be easily revised to suit academic standards because it is his brother's dream to see corruption and crime becoming subjects or part of the academic curriculum or syllabus.

"It has not been easy to find editors because a lot of those that were approached have been turning down the request for fear of not wanting to be associated with my brother. But I thank the current team for accepting to take up the task defying the odds to support this good cause."

"It is a rare opportunity for a convict to come to the open to condemn the crime that landed him in jail, most convicts prefer to keep quiet and even pray for more to commit similar crimes so that they should join them but Osward does not want others to end up like him," said Edward.

"We know that not everyone would welcome this development but we believe that those who wish the country well and are happy to see corruption reduced will support this mission by allowing or inviting our brother to make presentations at their functions, at their organizations, churches and many other forums all they need to do is just ask permission from the prison authorities," added Edward.

He called on the police department, the ACB and other agencies including government and non-governmental institutions including rights groups to be inviting Osward whenever they have anti-crime and anti-corruption activities saying Osward's contributions as a living example could make a very big difference.

Asked whether his brother still nurtures any political ambition, Edward clearly said that his brother no longer has any political ambitions and that he is currently studying for a degree in Public Health because his interest now is to serve the public where possible help in saving people's lives through disease prevention and to concentrate on rebuilding his family business which has been his life all along.

"Osward now believes that there are other better means of serving the people besides politics and that is the route he is taking now. To Osward, prison is another learning point not the end of the world. Osward says prison should be avoided at all costs by avoiding breaking the law," said Edward.

He said his brother will not be interested to do business with government and will focus dealing with a common man.

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