The opposition Economic Freedom Fighters party has asked the Anti-Corruption Commission to investigate the alleged procurement of Fertiliser worth 50 million US dollars by the government using Alpha Commodities Zambia Limited.
In a letter dated 17th February 2022 signed by the party President Kasonde Mwenda and his Secretary General Changala Siame, the party wants the ACC to expeditiously investigate the corruption allegations leveled against the company.
The EFF says the ACC should institute investigations on the single sourcing of the fertilizer supplier as it was confirmed by Vice President Mutale Nalumango to Parliament.
Party President Kasonde Mwenda and his Secretary General Changala Siame have stated that in as much as the law allows the alternative procurement procedures in special circumstances, the required conditions to allow for a single source were not met.
The duo have said the procured Fertiliser was overpriced by over 150 percent and there was alleged interference with the award of the Fertiliser supply tender by a known cabinet Minister.
“Salient issues raised in the letter to the ACC Director-General calls for investigation in The Single-Sourcing of the fertilizer supplier (Alpha Commodities Zambia Limited) as was confirmed by her honour the Vice President of Zambia Madam Mutale Nalumango to Parliament is illegal and contrary to Law as is contained in the Public Procurement Act no. 8 of 2020: Sec 54. (1) A procuring entity shall use open bidding as the preferred procurement method for the public procurement of goods, works, services and for the purposes of the Republic.”
“In as much as the Law allows for alternative procurement procedures in special circumstances; the required conditions to allow for a single source were not met as is stipulated in our law PPA 54(2), thus rendering the whole procurement process of the said fertilizer an abuse of power and thus an act of corruption.”
“The procured fertilizer was overpriced by over 150%. Current Saudi Arabia sourced fertilizer price per ton is between $400 to $550 yet the Government of Zambia procured the same at $1, 040 from the said supplier. This procurement was out of the allocated budget and illegal as it goes against the Law: Public Procurement Act no. 8 of 2020: Sec 56 (3) A person who knowingly commences or approves a procurement proceeding without ascertaining whether the procurement is within budget or funds are available for the procurement, commits an offense.”
“Alleged interference with the award of the said Fertilizer Supply tender by the Minister of Information and Media Hon. Chushi Kasanda. The Zambian citizenry wishes you to investigate and ascertain or dispel her alleged involvement. It is also alleged that the said supply of fertilizer has not been fully delivered. That too the Zambian citizens wishes you to investigate.”
Meanwhile, the Anti-Corruption Commission has arrested a Zambia National Service (ZNS) Director of Operations for corrupt practices involving the exportation of Mukula logs.
Anti-Corruption Commission Spokesperson Queen Chibwe named the officer as Colonel Maliwa Muwanei aged 45, of ZNS Makeni in Lusaka.
Mrs Chibwe said that Colonel Muwanei has been arrested and charged with one count of Abuse of Authority of Office, contrary to Section 21 sub section 1 of the Anti-Corruption Act number 3 of 2012.
Details are that Colonel Muwanei whilst acting together with persons unknown on dates unknown but between 1st June 2021 and 30th September 2021 in Lusaka did Abuse the Authority of Office by arbitrarily resolving to regularize an attempted illegal export to China of Twenty-Three (23) containers laden with Mukula logs transported by Ackson Tembo of ACK General Suppliers, an act which is prejudicial to the interest of the Government of the Republic of Zambia.
He has since been released on bond and will appear in court soon.
The joint investigative team has also arrested and charged businessman Bwalya Kalandanya for the offence of fraudulent registration of contractor’s certificate contrary to section 57(1) (a) as read with subsection (2) of the National Council for Construction Act no.10 of 2020.
Police Spokesperson Rae Hamoonga said that it is alleged that on 12th October, 2016 at unknown time at National Council for Construction in Lusaka, the suspect with intent to deceive officers did procure registration of contractor’s certificate in the names of Nsochita General Contractors and Suppliers Limited by false representation and used the said certificate to bid for tenders and was awarded various contracts by the government.
Mr Hamoonga says Kalandanya will appear in court soon.