Malawi Vice-President Saulos Chilima released on bail in Sh34m corruption case

FILE - Malawi's Vice President Saulos Klaus Chilima arrives at a polling station in Lilongwe, Malawi May 21, 2019 in this still image obtained from REUTERS TV video.

Malawi's Vice President Saulos Chilima is out on bail after his arrest in connection with alleged kickbacks. It is the latest in a series of arrests of officials suspected of corruption.

Malawi's Anti-Corruption Bureau says Chilima received payments amounting to $280,000 and other items from British businessman Zuneth Sattar in return for awarding Malawi Government contracts.

The bureau says Chilima received the kickbacks between March 2021 and October 2021 after awarding Malawi Defense Force and Malawi Police Service contracts to two companies connected to Sattar.

Chilima is facing six counts of corrupt practices by a public officer, profiting from government contracts, and failing to make a full report to officers of the bureau.

In June, Malawi President Lazarus Chakwera suspended the powers of the Vice President after the country's Anti-Corruption Bureau accused Chilima of accepting kickbacks in return for government contracts.

The Chief Resident's Magistrate court in the capital Lilongwe granted Chilima bail. Among the conditions of his release is that he report to the Anti-Corruption Bureau every three months.