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Malawi VP Saulos Chilima Face Detention Over $280,000 Bribery Allegations

Saulos Chilima

According to Malawi’s anti-corruption commission, the country’s Vice President Saulos Chilima has been detained and charged with graft in connection with a businessman who is both British and Malawian.

As reported by the Anti-Corruption Bureau, the president’s deputy, who has been deprived of his authority, has been charged with many counts of corruption and accepting bribes to influence government contracts.

In a statement issued by ACB spokeswoman Egrita Mdala, “He took advantage in the shape of money equal to $280,000 and other items from (British-Malawian businessman) Zuneth Sattar” in exchange for the latter’s companies receiving contracts from the Malawian government.

Chilima had a Friday afternoon court appearance scheduled. His United Transformation Movement party officials and supporters had already gathered outside to show their support.

When specifics of the alleged fraud first became known in June, President Lazarus Chakwera removed Saulos Chilima‘s authority.

Since Chilima was an elected official, the president was not permitted to suspend or dismiss him under Malawi’s constitution.

In connection with the case, where 53 public officials are accused of accepting money from Sattar between March and October 2021, a number of ministers and former ministers have already been detained.

Saulos Chilima and Chakwera worked together to win the rerun of the 2020 presidential election, triumphing on a platform of anti-corruption.

In 2019, he and Chakwera had joined forces to challenge rigged elections, which resulted in a court-approved election the following year, in which Chakwera defeated former leader Peter Mutharika.


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