Joyce Banda’s Cashgate Update:ACB Says To Arrest More People
The Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) has disclosed that it is to make fresh arrests in connection to the massive plunder of government money known as ‘cashgate’.Confirming the development, ACB deputy director Reyneck Matemba said the body is to arrest suspects listed in the Bakers Tilly report on public funds looting.
“We are just waiting for court vacation to bring some cases in court, out of five cases that are ready we have to make two new arrests and also we will be arresting civil servants connected in any way to the looting of funds,” said Matemba.
In 2013, some government officials were reported to have been exploiting a loophole in the civil service financial system to divert billions of Kwacha from government coffers following a financial audit.Money up to $250 million (£150m) was recorded to have been lost through fraudulent payments to businessmen for services that were not rendered.
Allegations of the massive looting of government money became public following the shooting of the finance ministry’s then budget director Paul Mphwiyo in September 2013.Just days before, a junior civil servant was found with bales of cash totalling more than $300,000 in the boot of his car.
Since the release of a financial audit by Bakers Tilly, ACB has dragged some civil servants to court for prosecution including the cashgate Chief Oswald Lutepo who is currently serving a 11 year jail term.