ZAMBIA has continued to witness unproven allegations of public service workers being dismissed based on tribal and political reasons. The Acting Secretary to Cabinet Patrick Kangwa owes the nation an explanation on how that was under the past regime and is now being done under the new Dawn Administration, Center for Constitutionalism and Legal Justice Director Isaac Mwanza has said.
Mr Mwanza said there is a growing public perception that the Government under the administration of late President Michael Sata and Edgar Lungu and now Republican President, Hakainde Hichilema, had been and continues to dismiss civil servants based on political and tribal grounds.
These allegations, he said, against the Government are usually started by politicians themselves or affected civil servants and carried through social media for political purposes or to gain sympathy.
He said these allegations have now been authenticated by the Head of Civil Service through his recent statement inviting those who were dismissed on such unsubstantiated grounds.
Mr. Mwanza said Mr. Kangwa was part of the civil service establishment when public service workers were allegedly dismissed based on the alleged tribal and political lines by the previous regime.
“He is still part of this establishment when allegations are emerging workers continue to be dismissed based on tribal and political lines by the New Dawn Administration.
Mr. Kangwa must provide an explanation on these dismissals so the public can know what has caused such rot in the management of the public service.
“The Center does not believe any public service servant was or has recently been dismissed by Government because of one’s tribe or politics. However, owing to the subtle admission by Head of the Civil Service through his recent statement, it is more desirable than a public inquiry should be made to ascertain the truth and allow justice to run its full course,” he said.
“It is nevertheless absurd to expect Mr. Kangwa and his top civil service team, they very people who dismissed those public service workers, to hear appeals unless the strategy is to hide the truth from the public and apportion the blame on immediate political leaders through processes conducted in the dark. No truth will come out from such a process,” he said.
Mr Mwanza said “We finally call upon the Republican President, His Excellency Mr Hakainde Hichilema, to set up an inquiry led by an impartial judge on the dismissals that went on and are currently going. The Inquiry, as opposed to appeal processes done in darkness, will help determine whether dismissals were based on tribe and political reasons.
The Centre Director said the failure to inquire into this matter and allow the dark corner process to happen at Cabinet Office will strengthen some growing perception that President Hichilema is silently using his arm in a vindictive of wanting to paint the predecessor administration as having been tribal.
“We urge the President to allow dismissed public service workers to publicly testify, show that they were indeed dismissed based on tribal and political reasons and give room to those accused of carrying out those dismissals to defend themselves. This is what the rule of law means and not those dark corner processes being led by people, many of whom must stand accused as having conducted the dismissals,” he said.