Former Ministry of Agriculture PS arrested

The Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) has arrested former Ministry of Agriculture Permanent Secretary, Songowayo Zyambo , for corruption, involving US$131million in a case of unsupplied fertilizer.

Mr Ziambo 56, was arrested together with   former Principal Agricultural Economist, Grey Mwale 51, and former Principal Accountant Emmanuel Kabwe, aged 48.

The trio have been jointly charged with one (1) count of Fraudulently Facilitating Payment from the Public Revenue for Goods not Supplied in Full contrary to Section 41 of the Anti- Corruption Act No. 3 of 2012 of the Laws of Zambia.

 Details being that on dates unknown but between January 1,  2021 and  December 31, 2021 Mr Zyambo, jointly and acting together with Grey Mwale and Emmanuel Kabwe, whilst serving at the Ministry of Agriculture and responsible for the management and administration of public funds, did make a payment from public revenue, for goods not supplied in full.

 Mr Zyambo and his co-accused signed a letter of confirmation to Zambia National Commercial Bank on the 8th of April 2021 stating that Neria Investments Limited had delivered 100% of D-Compound and Urea fertilizer according to the requirements of the contract number MOA/FISP/G/1/2020, when it had not done so.

It is alleged that Neria Investments Limited was contracted by the Government of the Republic of Zambia to supply 75,380.70 metric tonnes of D-compound and 59,619.30 metric tonnes of Urea at a contract price of US$ 131, 142,682.65.

 The Commission in July recorded warn and caution statements from four directors at Neria Investments Limited, Bokani Soko, of 146 Mukuba Complex, Chudleigh in Lusaka, Justin Mutaa Katanekwa of house number 11965, Chelstone, Mohamed Zuneid Ismail Yousuf and Nadeem Yousuf both of Makeni in Lusaka.

Details are that  in 2021, the four directors acting for and on behalf of Neria Investment, by false pretences and with intent to defraud, did obtain money in the sum of United States Dollars One Hundred and Thirty One million, One Hundred and Forty Two Thousand Six Hundred and Eighty Two Sixty Five cents (US$ 131, 142,682.65) having falsely represented that 75,380.70 metric tonnes of D-Compound and 59619.30 metric tonnes of Urea were supplied and delivered at the Ministry of Agriculture when in fact not.

The trio have since been released on bond and will appear in court soon.

This is contained in a statement released to ZANIS in Lusaka today ,by ACC Head of Corporate Communications, Timothy Moon.