AN officer of the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) says MMD president Nevers Mumba solicited for CAD$122,000 from Barrick Gold Canada when he was high commissioner to that country to facilitate the hosting of an exchange programme.
Desmond Chiboola told Ndola High Court deputy registrar Joshua Banda, sitting as a magistrate in Lusaka that Barrick Gold deposited the money in a private account.
Dr Mumba is charged with abuse of authority and wilful failure to comply with applicable procedure relating to management of public funds.
Mr Chiboola said Dr Mumba approached the mining giant for support and that the funds were remitted to an account belonging to the Zambia-Canada Cultural Exchange Programme.
He said the exchange programme was an event planned by the mission in Canada as part of Zambia’s independence celebrations, which were part of a government programme.
“It was revealed during the investigations that Dr Mumba solicitated for CAD$122,000 from Barrick Gold Canada in order to host the exchange programme,” Mr Chiboola said.
He said the ACC had received reports on allegations of suspected abuse of authority of office against Dr Mumba at the Zambian mission in Canada and started investigating the matter.
Mr Chiboola said he travelled to Canada with two other officers to further investigate the matter and that while there, he examined several documents which revealed how the money was remitted.
It is alleged that Dr Mumba, as Zambia’s High Commissioner to Canada, between June 1, 2011 and December 31, 2011, wilfully failed to comply with laid down procedures in receiving and disbursing CAD$122,229.85, a donation to the Zambian government by a private company called Barrick Gold Corporation.
Dr Mumba is further alleged to have abused his authority of office – between October 1, 2009 and December 31, 2010 – by awarding contracts valued at CAD$9,000, CAD$19,850 and CAD$5,248 for electrical works, carpeting and construction of a deck at the Zambian High Commissioner’s residence in Canada.
It is further alleged that the contracts were awarded to three Canadian private companies – Restcon Construction Services, Argos Carpet Limited and Stanmark Construction, respectively, without following laid down procedure.