Bird’s Eye View: Is Chilima on the same page with his supporters?

Supporters and cheerleaders of Vice President Saulos Chilimas United Transformation Movement (UTM) are thrilled now that his corruption case has been dropped.

They are pretty pumped up because they have high hopes for him. But, hold up! Just because the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) decided to let it slide does not mean Chilimas off the hook and the Vice President knows this pretty well.

The saga unfurled with the tempestuous temerity of accusation, as the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) apprehended Chilima under the weighty allegations of malfeasance, accusing him of leveraging his governmental authority to broker dubious contracts with Zuneth Sattar.
Despite nearly a year of charges, the ACB could not substantiate them, eventually altering the entire charge sheet. This operational conduct suggests premature conclusions by the ACB regarding investigation readiness.

While Martha Chizuma, ACB Director General, made legal errors, they do not absolve the Vice President of guilt. His camp should be concerned that the case’s discontinuation leaves them in limbo.
Basically, Chilima is not out of the woods yet. He has gotta to prove his innocence in court if he wants those corruption allegations to go away for good.

Justice Redson Kapindu clarified that the discharge does not prevent future proceedings within six months based on the same facts.
That being said, it is imperative to address Martha Chizuma’s conduct, which has brought significant embarrassment to the country. She appeared more focused on pandering to the camera, social media and foreign interests, rather than adhering to the principles of law and natural justice.

Despite the clamour orchestrated by Chizuma, it is increasingly evident that the ACB lacks substantial evidence against Chilima, save for what was illegally obtained by the National Criminal Agency (NCA) of the United Kingdom.
As a legal practitioner, Chizuma should have been aware that evidence obtained by the NCA was inadmissible, as per the 2021 Supreme Court ruling.

Furthermore, besides the DPP ordering the termination of the case, the court had already dismissed three counts of abuse of office against Chilima in January 2024, citing the ACB’s failure to initiate trial within the stipulated timeframe.
This judicial directive concerning the abuse of office charges underscores the bureau’s rush to apprehend Chilima before acquiring prosecutable evidence, a clear manifestation of incompetence and abuse of authority by the ACB Director General.

It is not surprising that Chizuma resisted former DPP Steven Kayuni’s access to the case file, as both he and the current office holder harboured concerns regarding the bureau’s lack of evidence against the Vice President.

According to reports from the courtroom, the DPP was left with no choice but to demand access to the case file in March of this year for evaluation.
After scrutinising the evidence gathered by the ACB, the DPP reasonably concluded that the case was unwinnable and could potentially incur significant costs to the taxpayer in compensating the Vice President.

Therefore, the DPP has rightfully exercised his legal authority to terminate the corruption case against Chilima, aiming to rectify Martha Chizuma’s mistakes.
However, it is not yet time to pop Champaign and break jinx in celebrations! Victory is not yet at the doorstep UTM zealots.

UTM supporters led by Secretary General Patricia Kaliyati celebrating