According to a statement by the anti-corruption commission, Chitalu Chilufya is accused of conspiring to defraud the state of $17 million (£15 million) over the delivery of medical kits while he was serving as a minister in the previous administration.
Mulalelo Kakulubelwa, a former permanent secretary, and three directors of a local pharmacy were also charged with crimes alongside him.
They were all charged by Zambian authorities but later granted bail after denying the allegations.
They were among the well-known individuals detained on Wednesday for a variety of alleged crimes.
The Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) detained opposition politician Kelvin Bwalya Fube for allegedly failing to disclose a suspicious transaction in violation of money laundering regulations.
The journalist Margaret Musonda was detained because she owned items that were allegedly the proceeds of crime and valued at over $1.1 million.
They were released on bond and have not pled guilty.