Three Pharmacist Arrested By DEC


The Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) in Chipata, Eastern Province has arrested three pharmacists at the Chipata District Health Office for theft of government drugs and possession of property suspected of being proceeds of crime.

DEC Public Relations Officer Hussein Khan says the Commission has jointly charged Willard Mugala aged 42, Tamara Kamanga aged 42 and Fortune Mtonga aged 40 for Theft by Public Servant contrary to section 277 of the Penal Code Cap 87 of the Laws of Zambia.

Khan says the three have also been separately charged for Possession of Property Suspected of Being Proceeds of Crime contrary to section 71 of the Forfeiture of Proceeds of Crime Act No. 19 of 2010 of the Laws of Zambia.

“Particulars of the matter are that Mugala, Kamanga and Mtonga jointly and whilst acting together with others unknown on dates unknown but between 1st March and 14th August 2023 stole 897 containers of septrin antibiotic tablets valued at K897, 000 the property of the Government of the Republic of Zambia which came into their possession by virtue of their employment as pharmacists at the Chipata District Health Office,” disclosed Khan.

“The Commission has seized a number of properties in relation to this matter namely; four motor vehicles, two x three semi-detached flats, two x two semi-detached flats, one three bedroomed house and one plot. Four bank accounts have also been frozen with balances totalling K34, 465.95.”

He said the suspects are on bond and will appear in court soon.

“The Commission is concerned with the high incidents of theft of drugs from government health facilities. This practice is a clear and present danger to the health sector and the arrests of the three pharmacists is a clear demonstration of the Commission’s commitment to nip this trend in the bud and should send a message to others involved in this practice to desist forthwith,” he concluded.

“As an investigative agency of the State, the DEC will do its part to ensure that essential drugs meant for the Zambian people do not find their way into private pharmacies and wishes to inform members of the public that it has intensified its surveillance measures and will not hesitate to bring culprits to book.”


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