Transparency International Zambia (TIZ) Executive Director Wesley Chibamba has commended the Zambian government for taking the step of screening churches and religious organizations.
Chibamba has said if the church is going to be contributing to steering policy direction in Zambia, then it is only prudent that such groupings are properly screened.
“As TIZ, we are cognizant of the fact that Zambia is a Christian nation, and consequently policies and other key decisions made by the government are often times influenced by various religious groupings, it is in this vein that we commend government for introducing measures to curb the mushrooming of churches and “false” prophets”, Mr Chibamba said.
Chibamba was making a comment on the decision that has been taken by the Ministry of National Guidance and Religious Affairs to scrutinize churches that are operating and wish to operate in Zambia.
He was quick to mention that TIZ compliments the freedom of worship and association to a religious grouping as enshrined in the constitution as an organization that values transparency and accountability in the country.
Chibamba also observed that some churches are alleged to be purporting to serve the people spiritually yet unsuspecting Zambians are just profiteered.
And in light of this, Transparency International Zambia (TIZ) Executive Director Wesley Chibamba has said TIZ contends that churches should be held to the same standard and scrutiny as other social institutions in the country.
“Furthermore, religion plays a major role in our lives, thus it is only prudent that the government take appropriate measures to curb the mushrooming of unscrupulous churches” he stated.
Meanwhile, TIZ Executive Director has urged Government to provide clear and concise administrative provisions of the criteria to be used in the screening process least they undermine citizens’ rights.
“ We hope the government will be open-minded without any bias towards particular groups and individuals and consider consulting civil society and various established churches before going further with this decision”, he stated.