JACK Kalala has charged that President Edgar Lungu is compromised, hence his inability to dismiss corrupt ministers.
Last week, the Anti-Corruption Commission warned and cautioned health minister Chitalu Chilufya on allegations of “possession of property reasonably suspected to be proceeds of crime”.
However, ACC officers could not effect an arrest because a named provincial minister and some of President Lungu’s aides exerted pressure on the Commission to protect Dr Chilufya.
Commenting on the matter, Kalala, a former special assistant for projects implementation in the Levy Mwanawasa administration, said the public should in no way expect President Lungu to fight corruption because he is an accomplice.
“How many people have been arrested? How many people have been convicted? None. It shows that even himself is compromised. You see, that’s why he cannot fight corruption. He has a lot of money; he renovated the house there (in Lusaka’s Jack compound) there are policemen guarding the house and so on and so forth. Where did he get the money from?” Kalala asked yesterday.
“So, a compromised president cannot fight corruption because he’s the one encouraging it. So, this government headed by Edgar Chagwa Lungu cannot fight corruption because the system is corrupt. Lungu himself is corrupt, everyone else is corrupt in the system. How can a president start defending a minister who is being investigated?”
Kalala drew a comparison between presidents Lungu and Mwanwasa, and said: “They (ministers) know about him that he did this and he was involved in that, so that’s how the President also fears the ministers. So, he cannot take any action against them. Now with president Mwanawasa it was different. President Mwanawasa accounted for everything that he did; his imprest and everything was accounted for. So, he had no fear to take action against his ministers because no one could turn around and accuse president Mwanawasa of having done this, he compromised himself; he got money from here or there, no. But with this one it is different.”
He reaffirmed that the current government had no intention of fighting corruption.
“You see, this government is not there to fight corruption. Fighting corruption is not their agenda. As far as they’re concerned, ubomba mwibala alyefya mwibala (a labourer eats from the field). And that was stated by the President himself, so how do you expect the same person to start fighting corruption? When President Lungu talks about the fight against corruption he doesn’t mean it,” said Kalala. “You see those speeches are written for him for public consumption. But he doesn’t mean a single word of it because so far there’s a lot of corruption going on. So, no one in this government will be arrested by this government, or a minister will be dismissed for corrupt practices; that is not here nor there. What I would advise the institutions like the DEC (Drug Enforcement Commission) and Anti-Corruption Commission is to keep records of what they’re doing. When the government is removed then they will act on those things, not now. So, the President cannot fight corruption, he will not and he will never. President Lungu will never!”