- The minister of foreign affairs in Zambia, Stanley Kakubo, has tendered his resignation from the President's cabinet
- His resignation is on the heels of a viral video where Kakubo was caught collecting stacks of dollars from some Chinese contractors
- Kakubo confirmed the video's authenticity and said the real context would soon be revealed
Zambia's Foreign Minister, Stanley Kakubo, has resigned following accusations of accepting a bundle of money from a Chinese businessman, as depicted in a video.
Although he did not dispute his presence in the video, Kakubo asserted that he was confronting unfounded allegations about a business deal.
To prevent the government from being sidetracked by the controversy, he chose to step down, emphasising that the claims against him were baseless.
The video in question exhibits two individuals seated at a table, counting a meticulously arranged cash assortment, including US dollars and Zambian kwacha.
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Though their identities remain concealed, the individuals in the images sparked widespread speculation on social media, with many suggesting that the men in question were Mr. Kakubo and a Chinese entrepreneur.
Some raised concerns about the absence of a bank transfer and queried whether taxes had been settled in connection to the transaction.
Unconfirmed pictures of handwritten notes emerged online, with one indicating the exchange of $100,000 between a Zambian and a Chinese mining firm. Another note, dated July 8, 2022, referred to $200,000.
Kabuko confirmed authenticity of viral video
In his resignation letter, Mr. Kakubo acknowledged the legitimacy of the video and handwritten notes without contesting their authenticity.
However, he asserted that he had become the target of unfounded accusations related to a business deal involving his family business and a business partner with whom he maintained positive relations.
He clarified that his resignation as a minister aimed to prevent any distraction to the government's focus on enhancing the well-being of the people of Zambia.
Despite stepping down from his ministerial role, he expressed his intention to continue serving as a Member of Parliament.
As reported by BBC, Mr Kakubo said:
"In due course, we will provide the accurate context surrounding the recent developments."
Mr Hakainde Hichilema has accepted the resignation of Mr Kakubo, acknowledging his commendable work and leadership.
Previous corruption allegations against Kakubo
This marks the second instance of Mr Kakubo being embroiled in controversy.
Last year, he faced allegations of accepting a bribe when observed leaving the office of a Chinese-owned cement company with a briefcase.
He refuted the accusations, with the president defending him, citing the receipt of a calendar and a diary.
Zambia has significant Chinese investments, with over 600 businesses investing more than $3 billion, according to the Chinese embassy in 2022.
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Notably, Mr Kakubo is the first minister to resign under President Hichilema, who had pledged to combat corruption.
However, the opposition claims he unfairly targets its members, an accusation he denies.
In response to Kakubo's resignation, former President Edgar Lungu has called for an investigation into alleged corruption.
Mr Lungu said:
"I am not implying that Kakubo is guilty. All I am saying is that if there are no sacred cows in Mr Hichilema's fight against corruption, Kakubo should be investigated and, if need be, prosecuted..."
Cecilia Dapaah arrested and granted bail
In another story, YEN.com.gh reported that Cecilia Dapaah, a former Ghanaian minister, was granted bail after being arrested by the Office of the Special Prosecutor for alleged corruption.
She was released from her detention later, according to reports. Before being granted bail, Dapaah spent the day being questioned by the Special Prosecutor after reports that she had millions in cash stolen from her home.
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