By Kapya Kaoma
Seeing Lusambo in handcuffs with a swollen face made the New Dark Regime happy; finally the chicken coming home to roost! My simple question is, where was the ACC when Lusambo acquired “over 100 houses” as reported? This is the question we Zambians must be asking? “President Lungu,” is the short answer. If so, what makes us believe that the ACC is not overlooking corrupt actions in the New Dark Regime for fear of President HH? This is the one billion question that should trouble every Zambian, especially now when the ACC is officially under the President’s Office.
The rotten ACC raided, arrested and courts acquitted many people during the PF era once they blasphemed against its god. If Lusambo is as corrupt as reported, and the ACC did nothing, how much damage would this maggots dropping investigative body do to the nation now that the President controls it? PF scavengers must be fairly investigated and punished. But the current AAC lacks moral standing to make apolitical investigations–that which were no crimes during the Lungu administration cannot become crimes under the New Dark Regime without accountability. We to investigate the corruption of the ACC and probe its own corruption. We don’t have the ACC, but the President Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC). PACC is nothing but a maggot-filled carrion with the sole purpose of punishing the President’s opponents as opposed to protecting national coffers.
To depoliticize the investigations, we need an Independent Commission. But such an Independent body wouldn’t spare President HH and some of his closest allies either. So the President is comfortable using this rotten body to get even with his political opponents rather than protecting national coffers.
President HH’s fight against corruption may be well intended, but the drip, drip, drip arrests of former PF officials are slowly turning into political retribution in the public eye. This is due to frivolous cases that are not well investigated. The arrest and release and re-arrest format paints a picture of a desperate Regime in search of crimes by political opponents. The New Dark Regime may celebrate today, but tomorrow exists for a reason. As per Zambian tradition, unless today’s officials undress themselves before the new god, his UPND officials will be arrested for similar crimes by the same rotten ACC, when Baal is out of office. And henceforth a new god, the maggot-filled ACC to supplicate with new arrests of their former bosses.
But so is HH. Unless his immunity remains intact, he will be haunted. He has never been investigated for corruption. Some may argue that if he did anything wrong, he should have been arrested when he was in opposition. Such an argument ignores the fact that former administrations were under great pressure to ensure the freedoms of HH as an opposition leader; they feared diplomatic sanctions. Some cases were dropped for this very reason. In this regard, no investigation of his businesses has ever taken place and we shouldn’t expect anything now that the ACC is under his control.
Similarly, the assumption that HH is rich, thus he cannot be corrupt is unfounded. Across the globe, the rich are among the most corrupt people. So we shouldn’t be fooled by riches–if you give HH your open purse, he will claim it as his own. The truth will only be known when he is out of Office.
President Hichilema’s recent defense of his world tour as in Zambia’s interests as opposed to his private ones betrays logic. Aside from the fact that ambassadors represent Zambia’s interests in foreign lands and the President’s presence is not necessarily needed at every gathering, his trips are meant to promote his personal businesses in Dubai, New York, Glasgow and wherever he goes. Thus his opponents will surely find countless cases of corruption, conflicts of interest, and unethical business practices which could qualify as abuse of office. It is for this reason that his decision to have direct control of the ACC was simply unwise. Once he earns Zambia’s derogatory term, “former president,” his ministers like priests of Baal in jail to rot! For when it comes to political power, it is simply an allusion for a moment. Thereafter, ordinary persons, we all become. Another reason to use it wisely!