….116 cases in court
…243 cases investigated
If you indulge in corruption, we will get you, that is the message from the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) as it says it investigated a total of 243 cases in the past year beating its set target as it continues to scale up its fight against corruption.
In response to The Investigator Magazine’s questions on several matters, Principal Public Relations Officer Egrita Ndala also was close to meeting its set target in prosecutions, assuring Malawians that no one will escape justice if suspected to have committed corruption.
“In the year 2022/23 the Bureau concluded investigating 243 cases against a target of 136 cases. It also concluded prosecuting 18 cases against a set target of 33. Whilst the 18 cases may look small in view of the target it is an improvement from last year when we concluded 16 cases. There are 116 cases that are still ongoing and at various stages in court,” said Ndala.
Ndala said in the past year the ACB concluded cases such as Republic vs Jack Ngulube and others. Where the former DC and another person were acquitted, and three other suspects were convicted. Republic vs Viola and Chingola where the suspects were convicted and given a suspended sentence. The Bureau is appealing against the sentence. Republic Vs Elida Mambewe of Road traffic. She was convicted and given a suspended sentence after pleading guilty to the charge. Republic vs Mbandambanda. The CID officer was convicted and is on remand awaiting sentence.
The ACB publicist said in terms of financing, the bureau had utilised 93% of the funding it received in the 2022/23 financial year saying the graft agency only received 92 % of the approved budget, attributing some of the problems in funding to delays.
“The Bureau as a public institution processes its funding through the IFMIS. This means that when the system is down it cannot process the payments. Besides, funding for each month comes in the middle of the next month, that too is a contributing factor to delays in the processing of payments,” she added.
Ndala continued, “Fighting corruption demands a lot of resources such that one cannot say that the budget allocated to the Bureau is enough especially when you consider the inflation and rise in costs of various commodities. However, the Bureau will ensure that the allocated resources are used prudently to achieve the best results possible.”
The Investigator Magazine second edition will be out later this month and will publish more details on some of the cases the ACB is investigating.