Sunday, June 16, 2024

Pace of Prosecutions of Corruption cases is not the Responsibility of the executive-Information Minister tells Catholic Bishops

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Chief Government Spokesperson Chushi Kasanda has said that the pace of prosecutions of corruption cases including the outcomes thereof, is not the responsibility of the executive.

Reacting to the Pastoral letter by the Catholic Bishops expressing concerns over the high poverty and inequality levels, moral decay, corruption, regional and tribal sentiments and unemployment among many other issues, Ms Kasanda said that government believes that tremendous progress has been made in fighting corruption and the mere fact that all suspected wrongdoing in the past and present is being pursued aggressively, and some of the public resources and assets recovered, shows that the fight against corruption is on course.

Ms. Kasanda, who is also the Information and Media Minister, also said that issues such as unemployment, poverty, free education and the Constituency Development Funds (CDF), are being prioritised by the government to better the lives of the people, citing reduced inflation and restructured the debt which the previous government left.

Below is the full statement

PRESS STATEMENT BY THE MINISTER OF INFORMATION AND MEDIA AND CHIEF GOVERNMENT SPOKESPERSON, HON. CHUSHI KASANDA, MP, ON ISSUES RAISED BY THE ZAMBIA CONFERENCE OF CATHOLIC BISHOPS IN THEIR STATEMENT

Government has taken note of the issues raised by the Zambia Conference of Catholic Bishops in their statement on the ‘State of the Nation,’ dated 18th November, 2022.
The statement is in line with Government’s open-door policy where citizens and stakeholders are at liberty to raise issues that require Government’s attention. The issues raised in the statement such as unemployment, poverty, free education, health, Constituency Development Fund (CDF), agriculture, the rule of law and the fight against corruption, are some of the priority areas that preoccupy this Government from the time it came into office. In this regard, Government has, and continues, to address these and many other issues for the betterment of the Zambian people.

Key to this, is the revival of the economy which Government has prioritised in uplifting people’s lives. Since coming into office over a year ago, inflation has climbed down from double to single digit, with the kwacha now ranked as the best performing currency in the world. The huge debt left by the previous Government is being restructured and dismantled and resources released from the same are being redirected to other needy areas such as education and health among others.

Further, investor confidence has been restored in the country’s economy arising from Government’s sustained efforts to reposition the country as a prime investment destination. Improving the welfare of Zambians, in particular the aged and other disadvantaged in society, Government’s allocation to social protection has increased from K6.3 billion in 2022, to K8.1 billion in 2023. The number of beneficiaries is being increased from the current 880, 539 in 2021, to 1, 324, 000 in 2023. In its efforts to empower people to take charge of their developmental needs at the local level, Government has decentralised the governance system from Lusaka to the districts accompanied by resources of up to K28.3 million per constituency, which has never happened since independence nearly six decades ago. As part of actualising this measure, Government is revising the guidelines and the Constituency Development Fund Act.

On unity, Government has been emphatic on promoting the one Zambia, One Nation Motto. This can be seen in the appointments of citizens to various positions of responsibility, including the recent recruitment of civil servants which was based on merit and not any political, ethnic or tribal considerations. Government is happy that Zambians have responded positively in embracing one another as brothers and sisters regardless of ethnic, tribal or regional background.

In the statement, the Catholic Bishops also raise concern on the fight against corruption which they feel is not yielding desired results. While Government respects this view, it believes that tremendous progress has been made. The mere fact that all suspected wrongdoing in the past and present is being pursued aggressively, and some of the public resources and assets recovered, shows that the fight against corruption is on course. It ought to be noted, however, that the pace of prosecutions of corruption cases including the outcomes thereof, is not the responsibility of the executive. Further, all suspects have a right to legal recourse as provided for in our laws, some of which are very lengthy.

Government is aware that the free education policy still requires capitalisation in terms of more classroom space, desks, teachers and other facilities arising from the high number of children that have come back to enroll in schools countrywide. However, the decision to introduce free education could not wait even for a day even in the absence of the said facilities. Doing so would spell doom on the future of children whose parents and guardians could not afford the school fees. These and other measures are unlocking more opportunities for Zambians to live better and prosperous lives. Government is, nonetheless, aware of the enormity of the challenges at hand, as pointed out in the statement, and is under no illusion that the challenges will be overcome overnight.

Zambians can, however, take comfort in the fact that Government continues to address the many challenges that confront this nation. Government, therefore, values the role and voice of the church and other stakeholders in the governance and development of the country. And as President Hakainde Hichilema has always said, the Government and the Church are not in competition but in cooperation in the development of the country.

Hon. Chushi Kasanda, MP
MINISTER OF INFORMATION AND MEDIA AND CHIEF GOVERNMENT SPOKESPERSON
19th November, 2022.

35 COMMENTS

  1. The answer from the Information Minister to the bishops concerns declared ineligible for an office because the New Dawn administration is drifting from the Mandate it was voted in agreement of.

    minister of information describing the government very loosely. Left one not knowing if describing a political party or GRZ.

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    • This statement was probably written for her by that cadre in Ministry of Information who denies everything…the one the created the position of Media Director. She is too dull she just reads it without question,

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  2. Has she started going to night school? Let us just allow speaking in local languages in parliament like they do in south africa so that some people can come out the the shells and express themselves. For Shisushi Kasanda, the reality on the ground is that fuel is at k24 per liter, mealie meal is at k160 per 25kg bag, fertilizer is at k1200 per 50kg bag, electricity tariffs have been increased, education is only free up to grade 12, there have been zero conviction on corruption accusations only catch and release, political violence and police brutality are on the rise, the cadres are back charging marketeers in markets, the president is always traveling wondering what time he works. We are in hell thanks to the unemployed youths who voted for you.

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    • Night school would not help in such a position…its like putting someone who has never played football as a Goalkeeper in a Premier League team you can not just learn overnight and become a good goalie. Anyway this is HH and UPND’s own goal they have placed incompetent people in such sensitive positions.

    • South africa has 8 official languages and what they have discovered is that this is an expensive policy. In fact other languages have found themselves ignored as only English and Afrikaans get priority in everything from parliament debates through government official communications to public signposted etc etc. We don’t have the capacity so let’s just stick to English

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  3. Here is more evidence that this dull woman needs to go…if its not the responsiblity of the Executive then what mandate were you elected on? Go and check the archives HH and his officials promised us speedy court processes…go and read what the President said when he appointed the Chief Justice at the swearing in ceremony. This woman is too dull to be in public office.

  4. Torino does not understand the concept of diviion ôf labour / wings of government and the indepedence of the judiciary in a democratic nation like zambia. Plz take note that the president is not supposed to inluence the processes in the judiciary. PLZ go back to school fôr free (educatio) and you shall find enough civic education teachers there.

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  5. @lawyer paul, it is not division of labour but division of power, If there is someone who needs to go back to school here it is you. This president influences everything. The Police, ECZ, ACC and the courts that a now wings of UPND acts on the president’s social media directives. If the president goes on social media and announces that this and that persons are corrupt, the wings of UPND whose leader are his appointees immediately swings into action.

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  6. let those ii judidiciary labour independently on judicial maters let all thoes in legislature labour on formulation of laws because labour is the genesis of power/authoririty in case you never went to the school of law like me. And let all those who call thenselve tarinos, aranges and the like when they are bantu. to realise that names have hiden powers and may negatively or positively influence peoplle’s behavior and general understanding of things. Majority of people with such names dont easily understand national issues. As long as one is given tarino or fanta by a corrupt crook, the name ‘ tarino’ or ‘fanta’ reigns for ever.. Oh! sanity is now being restored in our nation. Onlly those who were brainwashed in the last 10 years cant see this . Others have even going to an…

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  7. Faith Musonda gave up some of the stolen money. Chitotela who only paid back K100,000 under Lungu, is back in court. Tell me guys, how much corrupt and stolen money was recovered in TEN SOLID years of PF (Sata and Lungu) rule? Emerine Kabanshi went to prison for breaking the law but even according to the court, she never personally benefited from her misdeed. As for cadres ‘back on the streets,’ the policy of the government is very clearly against them and they have been condemned and warned that they are on their own. This was never the case under PF. In less than 2 years, the UPND has done far much better than what both MMD and PF did in 30 years! Give them 5 years and judge them in 2026.

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  8. What is she saying? Doesn’t she know the executive is responsible for the employment of staff in the judiciary? Basic lesson: If the executive employs more staff the speed of court cases improves because they can be handled quicker

  9. Truly shocking – the misogynistic vibes directed at this lady are shameful! Gentlemen…that is, if you do deserve to be classed “gentle” – I think not! Could you please spare the lady, and instead attack the man who had the beans to appoint her, to your disgust! This is 2022, let’s be civil to women.

  10. Issues equally important. But, in my book, free education beats them all. And implementation at earliest opportunity, is the best thing the UPND government did, & must be commended for. To suggest free education is withheld or delayed until we’ve built enough schools & employed more teachers, is to be grossly unimaginative. Why would you construct structures, & employ staff for needs you didn’t have? The great numbers of children now attending school, exceeding classroom limits – indicates there is need for more schools, teachers, desks..etc; and I’m virtually certain these should follow shortly. For now, at least, children who didn’t have a chance of an education because of fees, have been enabled. They can get up from bed with enthusiasm & purpose. There’s now hope of an…

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  11. “the decision to introduce free education could not wait even for a day even in the absence of the said facilities”
    Well stated madam minister.
    The PF benefited greatly from the high illiteracy levels and lack of education cause this became the source to recruit their party cadres.
    Free education is a danger to the PF support base.

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  12. with the kwacha now ranked as the best performing currency in the world. like i always say the UPND government has no clue with what is happening on the ground , the women sounds like she enjoys mocking people, before you make such statements please do a spot check on what is on the ground, transport, mealie meal , electricity and other comdities, the best performing kwacha in the world madam are you sure?

  13. Zambians now do have MORE money in their pockets. In August 2021, inflation was 24%. Furthermore, K28 was equivalent to US $1. Let me simplify this for those Mathematically challenged. In 2021, if something cost K100 in July, it would cost K124 in August. If you imported something worth $1 you would pay K28. Today, if something cost K100 in July, it would cost K109 in August. If you imported something worth $1, you are now paying K17. What it means is that the Kwacha that you have in your pocket is of higher value than it was more than a year ago. Zambians need financial education to understand how to take advantage of low inflation and better exchange rates.

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