Government of Malawi has through ministry of Finance written to the Chief Executive Officer, Columbia Gem House in the United States of America claiming for the sum of US$309,600,000,000.00( Three Hundred and Nine Billion Six Hundred Million US Dollars).
In a letter signed by the Attorney General, Thabo Chakaka Nyirenda, The State said amount represents unpaid tax revenue in respect of ruby and Sapphire extracted from Chimwadzulo Mine in Ntcheu District by Nyala Mines Limited, a subsidiary of Columbia Gem House.
“I represent the Malawi Government (State of Malawi) in suits by or against government or public officers. I have received instructions from the State of Malawi through her minister of finance to claim from you the sum of US$309,6000,000 (Three Hundred and Nine Billion, Sux hundred million US Dollars) representing the unpaid tax revenue in respect of ruby and sapphire extracted from Chimwadzulo Mine In Ntcheu District by Nyala Mine Limited, a Subsidiary of Columbia Gem House,” reads part of the letter.
Among other legal basis for the claim, Thabo Said Columbia Gem House failed to disclose all its income realised from the investment.
“Multinations and internationals who are carrying on businesses in Malawi are supposed to operate legally and this includes the disclosure of all income earned from the investment to diligently and promptly pay taxes to Malawi,” added Thabo.
The Attorney General also said Columbia Gem House and Nyasa Mines were mis pricing and improperly transferring pricing techniques in its exportation of Ruby and Sapphire from Malawi.
“Nyala Mines Limited and Columbia Gem House also committed tax evasion, money laundering offences and other kindred offences when they evaded the payment of taxes,” said Attorney General.
The Attorney General, Thabo Chakaka -Nyirenda then warned that the state of Malawi has the right to institute criminal proceedings against Nyala Mines Limited and Columbia Gem House and every person charged with or concerned or acting in, the control or management of the affairs or activities of Nyala Mines Limited and Columbia Gem House and against every person that participated in the evasion of taxes and fraudulent invoicing of reports.
Nyirenda further told Columbia Gem House that it is Malawi’s position that they dishonestly changed the name of the mining company from Mineral Exploration Pty Limited to Nyala Mines Limited to disguise the origin of the company so that the new name of the company sounded local to avoid suspicion and detection.
“The State of Malawi reserves the right to institute criminal proceedings on money laundering and tax evasion charges against you and all persons involved in the evasion of taxes should you fail to pay the said money,” he highlighted.
Nyirenda then said the State of Malawi will concurrently institute civil proceedings against them without further recourse to them whatsoever should they fail to pay the aforesaid amount or should they fail to indicate how they intend to pay the sum of money aforesaid.