Wynter M. Kabimba SC ODS. Economic Front Party PRESIDENT
The Forbidden Fruit is a true story of a secret love affair between Anne Murphy, an American young lady and Eamon Casey who was at the time the bishop of Galway in the United States. In this love relationship, the bishop fathered a son in breach of the doctrine of celibacy which has been the foundation of the Catholic Church for centuries. When Anne told the world after 18 years of covering up the secret affair, the bishop resigned his position in the church.
The secret love story between former President Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky which went public across the world led to the impeachment of Clinton and brought immeasurable shame on the president and his family. These are but two examples out of many scandals which have raised the question of the sanctity of morals for those holding public office. This is not to say that those occupying public office are saints or angels but that moral transgression in public office has and should have consequences.
In 2019, former President Edgar Lungu an avid Christian believer dropped the then minister of education David Mabumba whose pornographic video had gone viral on social media. Lungu’s action was swift as the nation saw the minister fired the same day with no unnecessary debate as to whether or not Mabumba was a victim of the devil. Last week the country awoke to serialized viral videos of a woman fondling her private parts and masterbating using a banana fruit as a vibrator. The videos sparked debate about her identity.
However, various comments finally settled the identity question. The lady was Mary Chirwa the all-powerful Director-General of the Drug Enforcement Commission, a state security agency which is charged with the responsibility of investigating money laundering offences not only in Zambia but also in collaboration with other jurisdictions. The DEC Director General is appointed by the President of Zambia under the constitution and Mary Chirwa was appointed and sworn in by HH, a fervent member of the seventh Day Adventist church.
A blog which gave the DG the right to be heard ran an article which quoted her as saying “I’m broken, I can’t speak.’’ She did not offer an explanation for her devastation or dispute her identity in the videos. While featuring on the Hot-FM programme, the president’s press aid preferred HH’s reflections in the matter. It was to the effect that Mary Chirwa should remain focused on her job. Again her identity was not in dispute. This was horrifying, coming from the president who is famed for piety and a man not guilty of any social sins committed by ordinary mortals.
In defence of feminism, Nellie Mutti who is speaker of the National Assembly took refuge in religiosity when the matter was raised in parliament “He who has not sinned or fondled himself, let him cast the first stone,’’ she said. She forgot or was blinded by her support to appreciate the fact that Mary Chirwa is not an ordinary person like the adulterous woman in the Bible. If Bishop Casey, Bill Clinton David Mabumba or Mary Chirwa were of pedestrian stock, society would have easily look the other way. But they are not, and hence the onerous duty placed on them to uphold high moral standards in the public offices they serve. Mary Chirwa will henceforth not command the respect and confidence of the public she is appointed to serve to fight vices of money laundering, except with HH, unless she first launders her corrupted morals.