The anti Corruption Commission, Kitwe office has warned and cautioned Mansa Town Clerk David Bwalya, His Diretor of Finance Edgar Kalunga and IT specialist Jones Katwishi.
This is in the matter where the Council is alleged to have irregularly procured two (2) second hand vehicles namely Toyota Hilux and Toyota Prado from Japan for the Office of the Town Clerk and the Mayor respectively.
The second charge is the irregular awarding of the Contract to Zamgrade Limited to Install Street lights for a stretch of 2km along Mansa-Samfya Road.
It is alleged that the procurement was not advertised and also despite it being a full contract, the council used its labour and resources to dig trenches and provision of cement respectively.
In reaction to being warned and cautioned by the Anti Corruption, the Town Clerk by virtue of being the principal officer of the Council has successfully facilitated the dismissal of the procurement officer Amon Siame and suspended two officers Accountants George Chilambwe and Jacob Siachiunda on suspicion of having both reported the Matter and provided evidence to Anti Corruption Commission.
Allegations are that, the Town Clerk being the chairperson of the Council Tender Committee did call a meeting to table the procurement of the two said vehicles in June last year.
Whilst the meeting was on, The Town Clerk verbally invited the IT specialist to bring with him a Laptop already connected to the internet and joined the meeting despite him not being a member of the Committee. After browsing for second hand vehicles and not getting instant feedback, the Town Clerk assured the members that he would call for another meeting for purposes of updates on the purchase. The second meeting was not called much to the surprise of other Committee members who only saw Vehicle brought in.
The irregular purchase of the said Second vehicles was exposed by the Integrity Committee (IC) of the Council, which was not only irregular but also an abrogation of Ministry of Local Government and Housing directive issued early last year to all Councils not to be buying second hand Machinery and Equipment. The same IC also exposed the connivance of the Director Finance with his cousin who masqueraded as an agent and collected the Vehicle in question from the port of Dar es Salaam despite Council having competent drivers and Mechanics. The Vehicle developed a gearbox fault on its way to Mansa and it was replacement was fitted in one of the Garages in Kitwe using council money.
The other allegation is the forgery of 2 sets of Tender Committee minutes for the same purchase of second hand vehicles which are highly contradicting each other and only signed by the Town Clerk and without the Tender Committee Secretaries signatures.
After being warned and cautioned by ACC, The Town Clerk has never been in his office for a full week. He is said to ha camped in Lusaka lobbying Bahati Member of Parliamen honorable Harry Kalaba to intervene so that the matter can be swept under the carpet.
The Town Clerk has been assuring Director Finance that the Matter will die a natural death as he has already talked to Foreign Affair Minister Kalaba whom in turn has promised to plead with the president to direct the Commissioner ACC not to effect an arrest.