The head of the police investigation said Frederick Chiluba would appear in court on 27 August to answer a total of 48 charges.

According to one of the charges, $29 million was diverted from the finance ministry and deposited into the state intelligency agency's account in Britain.

Chiluba, who left office in 2001, already faces 60 other charges relating to corruption and diversion of state funds during his 10 years as president of the southern African country.

Zambia is one of the world's
poorest countries

Politically-motivated charges

He was due in court on Tuesday on an application to have these charges tried in the High Court, arguing that he will not get a fair hearing in a lower court.

Chiluba, who is currently free on bail, is jointly charged with former intelligence chief Xavier Chunga and Atan Shansonga, a former ambassador to the United States.

The former president was arrested in February this year along with other top officials in his government on charges of abuse of office, theft and corruption.

He has denied the allegations saying they are politically motivated.