Nevers account in Canada did not belong to State – witness

A  State witness in Dr. Nevers Mumba’s case of abuse of authority of office yesterday admitted that he over stepped his mandate by auditing a private account which was opened by Dr. Mumba in Canada for funds he sourced from Barrick Gold Corporation in his private capacity.

Mr Jolyzia Manyonga, an auditor in the office of the Auditor-General said that he received a report that Dr Mumba received  a sum of 122.229 Canadian dollars which he allegedly misused by not following financial regulations.

But In cross examination Dr Mumba’s lawyer Mr Makebi Zulu challenged Mr. Manyonga to explain what made him think that the money allegedly used by the High Commission to sponsor the Amayenge Cultural ensemble belonged to the Zambian government when the group was funded by Barrick Gold Co-operation.

Mr Zulu further asked Mr. Manyonga if he knew that Dr. Mumba wrote a letter to the ministry of Community Development  to sponsor the  Amayenge Cultural Ensemble to travel to Canada and that the ministry replied that it did not have money for sponsorship.

Mr. Manyonga admitted that he was aware about the letter and the reply from the Ministry and he was also aware that it was Barrick Gold Co-operation which sponsored the group.

Mr Zulu further asked Mr.Manyonga to confirm whether he audited a public or a private account which had money from the sponsors to which he replied that he was given wrong information because he was only told that money was misused by the High Commissioner.

Mr  Manyonga told court that according to an investigation, the former High Commissioner to Canada received 122,229 Canadian dollars in two instalments.

The first instalment of 41,500 Canadian dollars was received in August 2011 and the second instalment of 80,759 Canadian dollars was received in September.

The money sourced by Dr Mumba was meant to support the Canada-Zambia Exchange Show which invited the Amayenge Cultural Ensemble.

Mr. Manyonga said from the bank statement the auditors were able to establish that a sum of 30,000 Canadian dollars was not accounted for because it lacked supporting documents in the form of payment vouchers and receipts.

He added that the same bank statement showed that an account did not belong to the Zambian government and the Secretary to the Treasury had no authority over it.

Mr.Manyonga further stated that same account had four signatories who were the High Commissioner Dr.Mumba,Dr.Joseph Daka,Cecillia Mulenga  and Mable Chipasha and the three were not employees of the Zambian government in Canada which was very irregular to have outsiders as signatories to an account opened by a government official(Dr.Mumba)

He also told the court that some payments were done without following financial regulations which he did not explain.

Mr Manyonga however said Dr Mumba did not seek authority to open an account and there lack of preparation and reconciliations of the bank statements.

He said there was also a wasteful of expenditures and the worst of all was the former High Commissioner’s involvement of his wife in the project.

Trial continues on August 26 .