PAC confirms Chizuma as ACB Director General

… DPP MPs walk out

President Lazarus Chakwera’s appointee Martha Chizuma has been confirmed as the new Anti-Corruption Bureau ( ACB) Director General.

The Public Appointments Committee (PAC) has confirmed Chizuma today,  about a week after the committee rejected her.

Members voted using open ballot after the committee agreed to change its standing orders.  A total of 12 members of the Committee said yes to Chizuma’s confirmation while one abstained from the vote.

The other members who showed up for the meeting had at the time walked out of the room due to disagreements. They are Victor Musowa, Mary Navitcha, Chifundo Makande and Masauko White.

Today, PAC members met to consider rescinding their decision to reject Chizuma and to adopt a report that was expected to be presented in Parliament on the committee’s decision to reject Chizuma.

Out of the 18 members who were present last week, 17 attended today’s meeting.

However, some Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) legislators walked out of the meeting insisting that PAC should only adopt a report which will be presented in Parliament and not discuss the motion.

Member of Parliament for Mulanje Bale Victor Musowa said the DPP members support the motion to rescind the decision to reject Chizuma but felt it was not proper for the committee to discuss the motion before presenting a report to the whole House.

Musowa also accused some members in the committee of verbally attacking the DPP members.

Legislator for Neno South Mark Katsonga who was accused of shouting at DPP members responded to the accusation by saying: “That’s what this meeting is all about”.

In the end, the remaining 12 voted for the confirmation of Chizuma. PAC has a total of 20 members.

Chairperson for PAC, Joyce Chitsulo, has since defended the decision to hold a second vote on Chizuma’s confirmation saying it is within procedures to have the committee change its mind.

According to Chitsulo, the committee adopted the motion from Dowa North East MP Sam Kawale.

She added that the 13 members who took part in the vote formed a quorum hence the walking-out of the DPP members has no effect on the decision

She said: “I am personally happy. I have been saying this that I for one would love to see Chizuma.”

 

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