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Zambian health minister acquitted of corruption

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A court in Zambia has acquitted Health Minister Chitalu Chilufya on all four charges of being in possession of property suspected to be from the proceeds of crime.

The Lusaka magistrate’s court ruled that there was insufficient evidence to try him.

The failure of the head of the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC), Rosemary Kuzwayo, to show up in court to explain why the commission had suspended an officer who doubted its conclusions appears to have led to the acquittal.

The prosecution had also informed the court that it will not call any other witnesses but rely on evidence given so far.

For its part, the defence asked the court to acquit their client if the prosecution had no further evidence.

The acquittal of Mr Chilufya may not go down well with anti-corruption campaigners, especially as it comes after President Edgar Lungu accused investigative agencies of targeting his ministers in order to weaken him.