Friday, March 1, 2024

Zambia’s Fiscal Dilemma, State Compensation Ethics and Treasury Stability


By Misheck Kakonde

The recent judgments overseen by the Attorney General in compensating individuals like Hon. Mwaliteta, Hon. Frank Tayali, Mr. William Banda, and the late Mapenzi a case that should be treated separately raise pertinent concerns. These compensations, while important to acknowledge, have led to substantial payouts from the state treasury, prompting a critical evaluation of their judiciousness.
It is essential to recognize that these compensations do not originate from personal accounts, be it President Hakainde Hichilema’s savings or those of the Attorney General and associated lawyers. They derive from public funds, necessitating prudent management to safeguard the state’s financial health. President Hichilema’s prior observation regarding the nation’s empty coffers adds weight to the significance of responsible fiscal governance.

The present scenario demands intervention from the President to prevent an unchecked depletion of the state treasury. While acknowledging the importance of compensations, there’s a call for the Attorney General to negotiate more reasonable amounts in these consent judgments. The substantial sums being awarded arguably exceeding what’s reasonable ought to be revised downwards, ideally to around K200,000 or lower. Unless in the loss of less of mapenzi, Vespers and many more, their life has no amount to be attached and it is hard even for me to attach a price, may their souls continue resting in peace and those involved are investigated and prosecuted. Such a move would prevent the disproportionate drain of state funds due to payments to a select few individuals.

The Attorney General holds the crucial responsibility of representing Zambian interests and should not succumb to undue pressure from a minority seeking exorbitant compensations. Their role necessitates negotiations for fair consent agreements that safeguard the nation’s fiscal stability.
However, within the confines of consent judgments, wherein both parties cannot appeal, the flexibility for direct alteration is limited. Yet, there exists a possibility for future generations to revisit these decisions through legal means, reassessing their impact on the Zambian treasury. Therefore, the Attorney general and President Hichilema should appreciate this truth.

This situation emphasizes the need for checks and balances to ensure the judicious use of state funds. The Attorney General’s role should extend beyond mere legal representation, incorporating a broader responsibility of safeguarding the nation’s financial interests. President Hichilema’s intervention can steer a course correction, addressing the trend of excessively high compensations that strain the state treasury.
Ultimately, this scenario underscores the delicate balance between honoring just compensations and ensuring responsible fiscal management a balance that requires prudent negotiation and oversight to protect the interests of all Zambians.

The author is a legal scholar, comparative politics specialist, History and Cultural Studies, expertise in international relations, negotiation, and protocol (ZIDIS). Author of the book “peering into Zambian Cultures, Ceremonies” and contributor in the book “Young Zambia between poverty and abundant resources”. Email: [email protected]


  1. Baka bolala! We warned you about hh the serial privatisation crook. Ati abatonga don’t steal. Here we are today they are stealing with impunity

  2. There is nothing more sacred than human rights.Human rights are enshrined in every constitution of civilized society to prevent the state from dehumanizing its citizens. Consent judgements are a way of protecting the treasury by negotiating those lower compensations which would definitely be much higher had they been awarded by the regular courts-don’t forget that the claimants had the right to refuse the offers and opt for court decisions.
    Your job is to educate the state, especially PF, that human rights violations can be very expensive

  3. Huge title, meagre content. If title were adhered to, author should have educated us what’s the budget for consent judgement judgements. Has that been exceeded? What are the guidelines in reaching a consent amount? Which principle in those guidelines has been flouted? Otherwise, mere shouting at the to of your voice because the figure is more than has ever entered your pocket does not hold water. And, please, stop scaring us with your lists of empty degrees, when you can’t contribute anything more than an an illiterate can do

  4. If the cases were taken to court the litigants might have even lost some cases and the state would have paid nothing. Even if the litigants won then tayali would have been awarded K5000 or less for merely having a gun pointed at him. Mwaliteta about K100,000 or less.

    • What is the basis of your figures? Before posting your comments, it would be a good idea to do a research or seek opinion from professionals. The only way you can cap a compensation should by law. A motion should be brought to parliament to deal with this, not ukusabailafye ati K5000 or K10000 with not basis

  5. We Tonga do not steal. What the mathafakas blaming UPND for the consent judgement are not telling you is why there are consent judgements. These are judgements judges are entering against Zambia for lawsuits brought against the government of Zambia. All these law suits result from the people that PF tricked, and swindled, who have now sued the government. Because we are bankrupt and cannot pay the US $33 billion borrowed and looted by the kalya-nyokos of PF, the lenders are demanding that we settle these law suits before they can agree to debt relief. Basically PF stole so much that Zambia is a the mercy of international lenders. In other words, these PF mathafakas sold the country to foreigners, and ran away with money. Tongas never sold anyone in slavery, and do not steal

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