Malawi: State Applies to Court to Strike Off Tractorgate Case

21 October 2019

Ombudsman Martha Chizuma says the Tractorgate case has stalled because the State has made an application to have the case struck off.

The tractors that were auctioned off to Malawi government 'beneficiaries' for a pittance instead of given to farmers

The High Court had earlier ordered the arrests for Secretary to Treasury Cliff Chiunda and principal secretary for the ministry of Agriculture Gray Nyandule Phiri.

However, the two could not be sent to jail after the state applied for a stay of the ruling.

Chizuma said the whole case is waiting for the court to make a determination on the application by the government to strike off the case.

"After the determination by the court on this issue, then we will see the next direction," said Chizuma.

She however expressed dismay that the two government officials were spared jail term for contempt of court, for their failure to apologise in newspapers.

"The apologies were made outside the agreed period," she said.

Government bought tractors using a loan from the government of India meant for the poor farmers but instead the government sold the tractors to powerful and influential people both in government and political parties at give away prices.

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