“The interview should be an easy process as the committee already knows her well.”
The newly-appointed ACB director, the incumbent industrious Ombudsman, Martha Chizuma says she is excited with her new job as the graft-busting boss and that she is ready to roll if confirmed.
However, Chizuma was cautious to comment further on the matter saying she is yet to be confirmed by the Public Appointments Committee of parliament.
She said: “I am excited for the new challenge but at the moment I cannot say much on the matter as I am yet to be confirmed by Parliament.”
Solicitor General Reyneck Matemba confirmed on Wednesday that the president have appointed Chizuma as the new ACB boss after she emerged tops in interviews for the post beating nine men with a stellar performance on the scoresheet.
Matemba said Chizuma’s name has since been forwarded to the Public Appointments Committee of parliament for further scrutiny.
Chairperson of the Public Appointments Committee of parliament Joyce Chitsulo confirmed the committee being informed of the matter.
She said: “I can confirm that we have indeed received a name for the new ACB director and what now remains is for parliament to set a date for the interview.”
Chitsulo said “the interview should be an easy process as the committee already knows her well” – having interviewed her recently during the renewal of her contract as Ombudsman.
Chizuma is the first woman to head the corruption-fighting organisation and expectations are so high as Malawian are waiting with abated breath to see how Chizuma, known for her bulldozer attitude would execute her duties at ACB, an important organisation, which for so long has been a toothless bulldog.
With vast experience and expertise in the legal profession, Chizuma is going to ACB as the people’s favourite public servant to help clean and clear the rubble.
The Anti- Corruption Bureau (ACB) was established by law Malawi to fight and prevent corruption as well as promoting and upholding the rule of law in the country
Section 13 of the Constitution of the Republic of Malawi committed the country to “introduce measures which will guarantee accountability, transparency, personal integrity and financial probity and which by virtue of their effectiveness and transparency will strengthen confidence in public institutions” In conformity with this commitment, Government presented a Corrupt Practices Bill, no 18 of 1995 which Parliament which was passed in December, 1995. It was amended in 2004.
The ACB is a government department headed by the Director General assisted by the Deputy Director General who are both appointed by the President but whose appointment is subject to ratification by the Public Appointments Committee of Parliament. Other officers of the Bureau are appointed by the Director General following normal procurement procedures. The finances of the Bureau are charged to the consolidated fund.
Gilton Chiwaula took took up his position as the first ACB Director on 1st March 1997 but ACB only became functional and commenced its full operations on 9th February 1998.
Others who served as ACB directors, among others, in the recent times, include Lucas Kondowe and Reyneck Matemba.
However, ACB is a controlled legal entity as its Director Director General is subject to the direction and control of the Minister (of justice) on all matters of policy, but otherwise is not subject to the direction or control in the performance of his professional duties.
Over the years the ACB has not been as effective as it should due political interference and lack of independence as the Bureau needs consent from the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) to prosecute suspects – a legal requirement widely viewed by many legal minds as controlling and not necessary.
President Lazarus has promised Malawians that he will guarantee the needed independence to all state agencies that are tasked with the law to fight crime in the country and Chizuma’s appointment appointment seem to suggest Chakwera’s intent to root out corruption in the country.
The Director General is required to submit an annual report to parliament through the minister. The first Director General and Deputy Director General officially took up their positions on 1st March 1997. The Bureau commenced full operations on 9th February 1998.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :