By Malawi Exclusive
Employees of the Reserve Bank of Malawi have reported Reserve Bank of Malawi (RBM) Governor, Wilson Banda, to Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) for lying under oath as public officers by defending fraudulent recruitment of Gerald Nsomba that it followed laid down procedures when the Governor and EDF Board were summoned to appear before the Public Appointment Committee (PAC) of Parliament on 4th November 2021.
Banda has been reported in his capacity as shareholder of EDF and the Board of EDF.
The Governor and EDF Board are being accused of appointing Fredrick Chanza as acting managing director of EDF without following fit and proper assessment procedures prior to the appointment as required by the RBM Directives.
The Governor and EDF Board are further being accused of floating a deliberately misrepresented advert for the recruitment of EDF CEO in order to facilitate another fraudulent recruitment of the EDF CEO.
The RBM employees have since requested the office of the Ombudsman to direct that the said newspaper advertisement for the recruitment of the Managing Director of Export Development Fund (EDF), be withdrawn, investigated and revised by clearly stating that “the applicant must have a track record working in either a financial institution with a minimum of ten (10) years work experience as Director/ Head of Department or at senior management level” as was the case with the newspaper advertisement of February 2017 when the position was once advertised in 2017 as required of strategic positions of this nature and not the phrase “with a combined work experience of at least ten (10) years” only as indicated recent fraudulent advert.
The RBM employees have also informed Honorable Ombudsman, that the said newspaper advert for the recruitment of the Managing Director/CEO was floated by the EDF following resignation of Mr Gerald Nsomba who was being investigated by your office for unprocedural recruitment to the position of CEO notwithstanding that he did not possess the prerequisite qualification and experience for entry for the job which was at least a relevant Master’s Degree and ten (10) years experience as Head of Department according to Human Resources Policy of the Group and the local daily newspaper advertisement of February 2017 when the position was once advertised in 2017 but nobody was recruited.
The complaint is that:
1. experience and core competences requirement for entry for the job in the as captured in most recent newspaper advert is not only strange and suspicious, but it is also materially distorted when compared to the one floated by EDF in the local daily newspaper of February 2017 when the position was once advertised as well as the most recent EDF job adverts as per attached. The requirement is also materially different from the industry best practices when compared to adverts of similar positions floated in the local daily newspaper by a sample of parastatal organisations as per attached.
2. the current advert has been deliberately misrepresented by stating that experience and core competences required for the entry of the job is combined work experience of at least ten (10) years only instead of a minimum of ten (10) years work experience as Director/Head of Department which is in line with Human Resources Policy of EDF and the RBM Group. We understand that this deliberate misrepresentation of facts has been made in order to facilitate another fraudulent and unprocedural recruitment of the Executive. Reference is made to item number (5) QUALIFICATIONS AND CORE REQUISITE COMPETENCIES of the said advert where, apart from academic qualifications, the applicant is required to have a track record working in either a financial institution or other public policy related jobs with a combined work experience of at least ten (10) years only.
3. the extract of the advert underlined above is not only clear as regards to minimum number of years of work experience of the applicant required at this strategic position but it is also not in line with the Human Resources Policy of EDF and the RBM Group as well as industry best practices. The advert has been deliberately misrepresented by the Board of Directors of EDF in order to facilitate another fraudulent and unprocedural recruitment of the said Executive.
The letter states that the position of a Managing Director of a serious strategic institution like Export Development Fund, a subsidiary of the Central Bank, could not just have a combined work experience of at least ten (10) years only. This is not only meant to cheat Malawians at large, but also executive fraud practices.
Therefore, we would like your office to direct that the said advert be immediately withdrawn, investigated, and revised by clearly stating that “the applicant must have a track record working in either a financial institution or other public policy related jobs with a minimum of ten (10) years work experience as Director/ Head of Department or at senior management level” as was the case with the newspaper advertisement of February 2017 when the position was once advertised. The advert to be circulated should be the to be appropriately revised.
The letter further claims the advert itself is manifestation of executive fraud which starts from manipulation of entry requirements for the job as well as recruitment procedures in order to legitimise subsequent planned fraudulent recruitment of the executive, as was the case with Mr Nsomba, and make it difficult to challenge by Malawians of good will. The Board of Directors of EDF and indeed the Governor of the Reserve Bank of Malawi, Dr Wilson Banda, in his capacity as Shareholder of EDF are not willing to learn from the current investigations by your office of unprocedural recruitment of Mr Gerald Nsomba and administer objective and generally accepted laid down recruitment procedures as evidenced by the approval of an advert which is deliberately intended to facilitate another fraudulent recruitment of the Executive.
It states that according to the weekend newspaper article titled PAC QUIZZES RBM ON EDF BOSS HIRING which appeared in Malawi News dated Saturday 6th November 2021, page 2, the Board of Directors of EDF and indeed the Governor of the Reserve Bank of Malawi, Dr Wilson Banda, in his capacity as Shareholder of EDF were quoted as defending recruitment of Mr Nsomba indicating that it followed the laid down procedures of Reserve Bank of Malawi Group and its subsidiary, Export Development Fund, which demand a merit-based competitive selection process when in fact the recruitment was fraudulent.
The letter has requested Honorable Ombudsman, to note that it was clear that the RBM Governor, as a public officer, instead of accepting that there was a problem with recruitment of Mr Nsomba and take leadership in correcting the matter, he lied before the Public Appointment Committee defending that it followed the laid down procedures of RBM Group and its subsidiary EDF, as evidenced by the newspaper article quoted above, while he was fully aware that in fact the recruitment was fraudulent. Accordingly, the Governor together with his accomplices, as public officers, must face the law.
The letter claims that the behavior of the RBM Governor and EDF Board could only mean that the affairs of EDF and indeed the RBM were being run by wrong people, at both Board of Directors and Shareholder levels, bent on fraud and corrupt practices as well as capable of facilitating fraud directly or indirectly. The current Board of Directors of EDF was still composed of some long standing members who were also in the previous Board of Directors and formed part of the Board that facilitated fraudulent recruitment of Mr Nsomba in similar fashion having been re-appointed to the Board of EDF by the same Governor.
In addition, Mr Neil Nyirongo who is the current Board Chairman of EDF is a home boy, long time close friend of the Governor of the Reserve Bank of Malawi, Dr Wilson Banda and former colleague in the Bank. Therefore, the employees claim that they have observed serious tendencies of collusion on matters of recruitment and serious deficiencies of good corporate governance practices.
We are, therefore, not surprised with the mess being created by the Governor and his friend. It is clear that Dr Wilson Banda in his capacity both as Governor of the Reserve Bank of Malawi and indeed Shareholder of EDF does not have the RBM vision under which the Bank created EDF to form part of the National Export Strategy (NES) in the country. We would have expected the Governor and the Board of EDF to be above reproach in terms of morality in managing this matter right from the beginning. Indeed, the Reserve Bank Governor and the Board of EDF are supposed to have unquestionable integrity.
The RBM employees have requested the Chairperson of the Public Appointment Committee, Honorable Joyce Chitsulo, the Director General of the Anti-Corruption Bureau, Honorable Martha Chizuma and the Secretary to the President and Cabinet, Mr ZangaZanga Chikhosi to also take appropriate action.