Zambia News

ACC arrests Owen Mugemenzulu, a former PS at the Ministry of Higher Education for corruption

THE Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) has arrested former Permanent Secretary at the

Ministry of Higher Education Owen Mugemenzulu for corrupt practices involving over US$33million.

Mr Mugemezulu, 52, of Lusaka has been arrested and charged with one count of wilful failure to comply with applicable law and procedure relating to procurement contrary to Section 34 (2) (b) of the Anti-Corruption Act No. 3 of 2012.

ACC spokesperson Queen Chibwe said the arrest is in connection with a contract he is alleged to have signed in 2017 with a

construction company called China Energy Engineering Group–Hunan Power Design Institute Co. Ltd worth Two Hundred and Twenty Five Million United States Dollars

(US$225,000,000.00) for the design and build of the FTJ Chiluba University in Mansa and Kasama under the Ministry of Higher Education.

She said investigations have established that pursuant to the contract, an advance payment amounting US$ 33,750,000.00 was paid to the contractor between February 2018 and June 2018 for works to commence.

“To date, the works performed on the two

sites by the contractor are not commensurate with the amount paid in advanced to the contractor and the project has since stalled,” she said.

Mrs Chibwe said the investigations further establish that Mr Mugemezulu signed the contract without following tender procedures and without subjecting the said contract to Zambia Public Procurement Authority (ZPPA) for approval.

She Mr Mugemezulu has since been detained in Police custody and is expected to appear before court on Friday 29th April 2022.

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