The Mangochi Second Grade Magistrate Court has convicted and sentenced a 44-year-old Headteacher at Fatima Private Primary School, Paul Kumwenda to three years imprisonment with hard labour for fraudulently obtaining Primary School Leaving Certificate Examination (PSLCE) fees from 22 Standard 8 pupils.
Mangochi police station public relations officer Amina Tepani Daudi say the court heard through prosecutor lnspector Shadreck Wisiki that, Kumwenda during the month of December 2022 was instructed by the Director of the said school to collect funds from the 22 candidates and dispatch to the Malawi National Examination Board (MANEB).
Daudi sahs, however the convict collected a sum of K120,000 cash and diverted the funds for personal use.
“Prosecutor Wisiki added that, on May 9, 2023 the school’s director discovered that the convict had failed to remit the collected funds to MANEB,” he says.
Daudi adds : “This came to light when he contacted the board to request examination identity cards and numbers for their candidates which resulted into the candidates failing to sit for this year’s examination.”
Appearing in court, the convict who pleaded guilty asked for court’s leniency citing that his services at the school were still needed to help the form 2 students.
In his submission, prosecutor Wisiki reminded the court that the convict had destroyed the future of the candidates and his inhumane actions had caused psychological torture to the students hence prayed for a custodial sentence.
Passing sentence Second Grade Magistrate Baxter Chikalimba concurred with the state hence sentenced him to 3-years imprisonment with hard labour as a deterrent to other would-be offenders.
Kumwenda comes from Walutunda Village, Traditional Authority Chikulamayembe in Rumphi District.