Northern Nigerian Breaking News

Malawi vice-president arrested over $280,000 bribery allegation

Vice President of Malawi, Saulos Klaus Chilima has been arrested and charged with graft over a bribery scandal involving a British-Malawian businessman, the country’s anti-corruption watchdog said.

The president’s deputy — who has been stripped of his powers — has been charged with several counts of corruption and taking bribes to influence government contracts, the Anti-Corruption Bureau said.

“He received advantage in the form of money amounting to $280,000 and other items from (British-Malawian businessman) Zuneth Sattar,” for the latter’s companies to be awarded Malawi government contracts, ACB spokeswoman Egrita Mdala said in a statement.

Footage from local media showed supporters of Chilima and the police seemingly in a scuffle as he was being taken into court for the formal reading of charges.

“I have no comment to make. We will let the court process run its course,” Chilima told reporters outside court after being granted bail, according to media.”

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The Anti-Corruption Bureau alleged that Chilima was rewarded for assisting Xaviar Limited and Malachitte FZE, two companies connected to British businessman Zuneth Sattar to be awarded contracts by the Malawi Government.

The watchdog has been investigating Sattar and other public officers in Malawi over alleged plundering of state resources by influencing awarding of contracts through the country’s public procurement system, it said.

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“On 25th November, 2022, the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) arrested Dr. Saulos Klaus Chilima… on allegation that between March 2021 and October 2021, he received advantage in form of money amounting to USD 280,000 and other items from Zuneth Sattar as a reward…” the bureau said.

In August, the Financial Times reported that Sattar was under investigation by Britain’s National Crime Agency (NCA) over alleged abuse of Malawi’s public procurement system.

He had not been charged with any offence and denied wrongdoing, the Financial Times said.

Earlier this year, Malawi’s President Lazarus Chakwera dissolved his entire cabinet on charges of corruption against three serving ministers. Chakwera pledged to clamp down on corruption during his inauguration in July 2020.


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