Anti-Corruption Bureau Director General (DG) Martha Chizuma has faulted the just released report by the commission which was investigating matters and circumstances that led to her arrest on December 6 2022.
But chairperson for the commission of inquiry, retired Justice of the Supreme Court of Appeal Edward Twea, has defended the report.
He has, however, said everyone is entitled to their opinion.
Through her lawyer Martha Kaukonde, Chizuma Thursday claimed that the inquiry disregarded her testimony.
She also said commissioners ignored the context of events that led to her arrest after she gave her side of the story when she appeared before members of the commission.
“My client is obviously disappointed that what she presented to the commission regarding the main issue that the inquiry was all about, [which has] to do with the manner and appropriateness of the arrest, was not presented,” Kaukonde said.
She has also questioned some of the conclusions and recommendations that the commission of inquiry has made in its report, saying they have been drawn without hearing Chizuma’s side of the story on specific assertions against her.
“…Moreover there are some conclusions that have been made by the commission based on submissions by one person on the issue of her uncooperativeness without hearing her side. That is not right.
“The recommendation that her office and others be reorganised is not based on the law considering that the issues for such a suggestion were already dealt with by the appointing authority in January 2022,” Kaukonde said.
On his part, Twea said in a telephone interview that it is wrong for Chizuma’s legal team and Malawians to turn the inquiry into a contest of an accuser and the accused.
“We have submitted the report and, thereafter, the issues rest with the authority that appointed the commission. It’s an inquiry, not an issue of accuser and accused, but if they take that approach, well, everyone has the right to hold [and express an] opinion,” Twea said.
The commission of inquiry has since made some recommendations.
“The commission recommends that appropriate action be taken to deal with the conduct of the DG of the ACB in so far as the leaked audio is concerned… Further; the commission recommends reorganisation of the leadership in the government offices responsible in the fight against corruption,” reads one of the recommendations.
The commission indicates, in its report, that it found both Chizuma and Director of Public Prosecutions Steven Kayuni at fault in the way they conducted themselves while discharging their duties and recommended that Chakwera should deal with them.
The commission also says it found that there are mistrust issues among the different offices that are mandated to fight corruption.
It, therefore, recommends that urgent action be taken to restore the dignity, integrity and trust of the offices that are involved in tackling corruption.
“Further, the commission recommends reorganisation of the leadership in the government offices responsible in the fight against corruption,” the report reads.