THE Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) says it will continue investigating a matter in which a former ward councillor of Lusaka allegedly purchased a named bank with all its assets for K300 million, until the case comes to a logical conclusion.
Commenting on the Bank of Zambia’s remarks that it was not in receipt of any application for acquisition of any commercial bank, ACC spokesperson Queen Chibwe said the commission was carrying out independent investigations.
She said BoZ would be notified if there would be a point at which the commission would need to get to them.
“That is for them to explain. Because we are carrying independent investigations. If there will be a point at which we need to get to BoZ, that time will come. When someone brings a report to say that ‘we suspect the manner in which a certain bank was bought,’ we get that information and we start investigating and so at that point as an institution, we thought of telling the public what cases we are investigating. The conclusion of the investigation will be made known. And you know that is the purpose of an investigation, you find whether it happened or it did not. So what the conclusion will be, we will still tell the public because we have to follow the case up to its logical conclusion then we tell the public,” Chibwe said.
“Everything we receive are suspicious reports so that is why we do investigations to prove or to tell whether it didn’t happen, that is why it is called an investigation. That is the purpose of an investigation: we want to find out the truth. That is why we always say ‘alleged’. These are investigations so when we have proper information, we will give you afterward anything that will come up after that because investigations are underway.”
During a press briefing, recently, the Commission disclosed that a former ward councillor was being investigated for buying a bank with all its assets.
“A former ward councilor of Lusaka is being investigated for the suspicious purchase of a named bank together with all of the bank’s assets worth K300 million. Investigations against officials at the Ministry of Local Government into alleged illegal awarding of contracts for road works worth over K10 million to two private companies which did not execute the works in Central Province,” Chibwe had told journalists.
But in response to a Diamond TV press query on the same, Tuesday, Bank of Zambia assistant director for communications Besnat Mwanza stated that the Bank of Zambia was not in receipt of any application for acquisition of any commercial bank.
“Please note that the Bank of Zambia is not in receipt of any application for acquisition of any commercial bank. The process for obtaining a banking license or acquiring an interest in a bank is rigorous and all applicants are required to fully comply with the set criteria before approval for a license or ownership of an interest is granted. Apart from determining that an applicant for a banking license has adequate capital, the Bank of Zambia also verifies the source of capital as part of compliance with international obligations related to Anti-Money Laundering requirements, Countering of Terrorists and Proliferation Financing and the Basel Core Principles of Effective Banking Supervision,” stated Mwanza.