Emmanuel Mwamba determined to recover missing misappropriated agric funds


WESTERN Province permanent secretary Emmanuel Mwamba has directed that the over K217,000 allegedly misappropriated or stolen at the provincial agricultural co-ordinator’s office be recovered.
In his letter dated August 9, 2013 to then provincial agricultural co-ordinator Simainga Simainga, who is now in North-Western Province, Mr Mwamba said the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) released the funds for agricultural programmes at Mayukwayukwa Refugee Settlement in Kaoma between 2009 and 2011 but was allegedly misappropriated.
Mr Mwamba’s letter to Dr Simainga is also copied to Secretary to the Treasury Fredson Yamba and Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock permanent secretary Siazongo Siakalenge.
Mr Mwamba said various audits conducted by UNHCR established that over K217,000 was stolen or misappropriated.
It was also established that as head of the unit, Dr Simainga was liable for the negligent loss of the funds.
Mr Mwamba said he has taken this action in accordance with the Disciplinary Code and Procedures in handling Offences in the Public Service.
He said under Section 35 (a) (iii), Government through the Secretary to the Treasury is mandated to recover or surcharge responsible officers for loss of funds or property.
Mr Mwamba said on  August 7, 2013, he held a meeting with UNHCR country director Laura lo Castro, who expressed concern that a new agricultural programme at Mayukwayukwa Refugee Settlement is at risk due to lack of action over previous audit revelations and Government’s failure to recover the unaccounted for K217,000.
Mr Mwamba said the audits uncovered financial impropriety, which was unacceptable, prompting him to direct the recovery of the funds from Dr Simainga as the audits established that the reckless expenditure and failure to abide by laid down procedures was only necessitated by intent to defraud the funds.
He said once the funds are recovered, they will be given back UNHCR.
Mr Mwamba regretted that the noble actions by co-operating partners such as UNHCR to support the country’s poverty reduction programmes are derailed due to reckless activities by some civil servants.
He also said when he reported to Western Province, he quickly requested the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock to transfer Dr Simainga to another province as he had allegedly caused audit queries amounting to over K5 million.
Last month, Mr Mwamba suspended two officers at the same office, who allegedly paid themselves K55,000 through the government payroll.
The two are Allen Siyubo and Liamba Liswaniso, who were working as end users on the payroll management establishment and control system, a payroll programme used by Government.