TWO top bosses at the Zambia National Farmers’ Union (ZNFU) have been arrested and charged in connection with the misapplication of K34 million donor funds as revealed by two independent audit reports conducted by KPMG Finland and EMM Corporates of Zambia.
The Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) yesterday charged and arrested union president Dr Evelyn Nguleka and Executive Director Ndambo Ndambo in connection with the misapplication of K34 million donor funds.
Following her arrest by DEC, Dr Nguleka tendered in her resignation as president of both ZNFU and the World Farmers’ Organisation (WFO) in order to prepare for the upcoming court case regarding allegations of misapplication of K34 million donor funds.
Both the Embassies of Finland and Sweden in Lusaka commissioned separate forensic audits that exposed extensive fraud, embezzlement and theft of over K34 million at the farmers’ institution.
The donors have since withheld further funding and criminal prosecution of the
culprits and a refund as the money was from tax payers in their respective countries.
Deputy Head of the Swedish Embassy David Wilkins disclosed that the second audit by KPMG confirmed the high level misappropriation, fraud and theft of their funding to the institutions.
Instead of funds going to farmers, the resources were diverted to unauthorised expenditure of inflated personal allowances, and contracts designed to be vehicles of fraud and theft.
Meanwhile, ZNFU spokesperson Kingsley Kaswende told the Daily Nation in a statement that the first vice president Mr Richard Lisimba will act in Dr Nguleka’s capacity. “Dr Nguleka has stepped down in order to prepare for the upcoming court case regarding allegations of misapplication of funds at ZNFU, following an audit that took place earlier this year.
“Constitutionally, ZNFU first vice President Mr Richard Lisimba will act in Dr Nguleka’s capacity,” he said.
Mr Kaswende said ZNFU would henceforth be restrained to give further comment on the matters, as they would now be before court.
“Dr Nguleka has also stepped down as president of the World Farmers’ Organisation (WFO).
“She has thanked the government, the farmers and the agriculture industry in Zambia and outside, for the good working relationship she has had with them,” he said.
Mr Kaswende said Dr Nguleka was now looking forward to the full process of the law to take its course.
He said Dr Nguleka had further wished ZNFU well in its future endeavours.