Chakwera speaks out against Chizuma’s arrest

Dec 6, 2022

National Police Headquarters Spokesperson Peter Kalaya says Chizuma was arrested following a complaint that was lodged by the Director of Public Prosecutions

By Cedric Nkungula

Malawi President Dr. Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera has spoken out against the arrest of Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) Director General Martha Chizuma.

Chakwera made the remarks on Tuesday morning during a meeting he held with the National Integrity Committee, which he had tasked with overseeing the Anti – Corruption Campaign he launched nationwide in August of which the ACB Director is a leading member.

Chizuma was scheduled to lead the committee in meeting the president to present to him a report on the deliverables achieved by the various pillars of the president’s anti – corruption campaign, which is scheduled to conclude on Anti – Corruption Day due in three days time.

In his remarks, the president said he will see to it that any wrongdoers who have abused their office in the course of Chizuma’s arrest are held accountable.

“This morning, we all woke up to the news that Ms. Martha Chizuma, the Director General of the Anti – Corruption Bureau, and a leading member of this committee who was scheduled to be in this meeting, was arrested under mysterious circumstances. Although I welcome the reports that she has been released, I have every intention of seeing that an inquiry into her arrest is conducted and any wrongdoers who have abused their office in this incident are held accountable,” Chakwera told the committee.

Commenting on the issue, Minister of Information Gospel Kazako said government is concerned by the lack of information from the Malawi Police Service regarding the reasons and the manner in which Chizuma’s arrest was effected.

“Notwithstanding, government will conduct an inquiry into this incident and hold any wrongdoers accountable for their actions undermine and threaten the progress that His Excellency President Chakwera and his government are making to thwart the vice of corruption and bring its culprits to book,” said Kazako who is also Chief Government Spokesperson in a statement.

National Police Headquarters Spokesperson Peter Kalaya says Chizuma was arrested following a complaint that was lodged by the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Steve Kayuni who alleged that he was injured by allegations made by the ACB head in a leaked audio clip in January, 2022.

According to Kalaya, High Court Judge Anabel Mtalimanja ruled in September, 2022 that any individual or party that felt aggrieved by contents of the leaked audio clip could proceed to complain to police for criminal action against the ACB Director General.

Chizuma who was arrested in the wee hours of Tuesday is currently on police bail.

Chizuma has been charged with making use of speech capable of prejudicing a person against a party to judicial proceedings, which is contrary to section 113 (1) (d) of the Penal Code.

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