Kampondamgaga surrenders Benz to ACB, won’t be prosecuted

President Lazarus Chakwera's Chief of Staff Prince Kapondamgaga

President Lazarus Chakwera’s Chief of Staff Prince Kapondamgaga has surrendered a Mercedes Benz he received from businessperson Zuneth Sattar and the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) says Kampondamgaga won’t be prosecuted.

The ACB has announced in a statement on Friday that it will not lay criminal charges against Kampondamgaga despite its investigation revealing that he received a vehicle fro Sattar who is accused of defrauding Malawi Government of billions of Kwacha through fraudulent contracts.

“The investigations had established that Mr. Kapondamgaga, the State House Chief of Staff was one of the public officers who had received a Mercedes Benz S Class 350d and other gifts from Mr Zuneth Sattar.

“Mr. Kapondamgaga voluntarily gave a statement to the Bureau and signed a restitution agreement with the Bureau. At the moment, he has already surrendered the Mercedes Benz S Class 350d. After a review of the evidence against Mr Kapondamgaga in this case, evaluation of the information he provided in respect of the broader investigations relating to Zuneth Sattar and the restitution agreement he has voluntarily entered with the Bureau, a prosecutorial discretion has been exercised not to lay criminal charges against him. Accordingly, the Bureau has completed and closed the investigations against him. Pursuant to its powers under Section 10 (4) of the Corrupt Practices Act,” the bureau said.

Platform for Investigative Journalism reported that Kampondamgaga also surrendered to the ACB an unspecified amount of money.

President Lazarus Chakwera suspended Kapondamgaga last year after the ACB named him as one of the public officials who allegedly received bribes from Sattar.

Others include Vice President Saulos Chilima who is alleged to have received about K290 million from Sattar to influence the awarding of contracts to Sattar’s companies.

The decision to free Kampondamgaga comes weeks after the Lazarus Chakwera administration decided to end the 14 year case against former President Bakili Muluzi who was alleged to have diverted K1.7 billion to his personal accounts. Muluzi paid back K86 million of the money.