Zambian road plot foiled

By Richard High19 May 2009

Zambia's Anti Corruption Commission (ACC) has uncovered a plot to defraud the Government's Road Development Agency (RDA) of ZMK 925 million (US$ 181000), according to the country's Lusaka Times newspaper.

The report said the ACC had originally awarded a contract for graveling, drainage works, road signs, and vegetation control on the Chama-Mwanya-Kazembe Road for ZMK 4 billion (US$ 781000) to local contractor Shachitari Construction.

A first payment of ZMK 487 million (US$ 95200) was made to the contractor for mobilization of equipment and vegetation control for the first phase of work.

Shachitari produced fake photos of another road to show completion of the works, however, an investigation by the ACC revealed this work had not been carried out.

Further investigations, said the report, revealed a second attempt to claim ZMK 925 million (US$ 181000) by the contractor with a certificate of completion being signed for by RDA engineers in Chipata for works covering drainage, road signs and mobilization.

Again fake pictures from another road were used to back up the claim.

Several arrests have been made and the case is expected to come to court soon, added the report.

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