Former Minister of Information Chishimba Kambwili says President Edgar Lungu must not be using innocent marketeers to clean dirty money through Presidential empowerment fund.
And Kambwili says government should immediately terminate the $1.2 billion Lusaka-Ndola dual-carriageway contract because it stinks of corruption.
Meanwhile, Kambwili says he has got nothing to do with a new party called National Democratic Congress because he is still PF.
At a media briefing at his house in Luanshya on Monday, Kambwili challenged the Head of State to explain the source of K10 million which he used to empower over 7 000 marketeers across the country.
“They said that they were going to be disclosing where the funds were going to come from, the donor who was going to put in the money but how long has it taken now? The innocent marketeers should be cleaning dirty money through market empowerment fund. We want to know who are the donors who are putting in that money? Zambians deserve to know, we don’t want to speculate,” Kambwili said.
“So Mr President, we love you, you are humble man, very humble, please tell us where you have gotten the K10 million that you have pushed in the market empowerment, very good project but where is the money coming from? We don’t want our marketeers to be handling petty money, we want our marketeers to be handling clean money and clean money can only be money that is explained, the source is explained correctly to the people of Zambia.”
Kambwili who is also expelled Roan PF member of parliament insisted that President Lungu should explain what business he was doing for him to acquire K21.5 million of assets within a year.
“If you follow the President, he is a very unusual person, in 2015 when the late President Michael Sata died, he declared that total asset portfolio was K2.5 million, one year later, in 2016, he declared K23 million as his total asset portfolio meaning therefore that he had made K21.5 million within one year. We would like to know what business the President was doing to acquire K21.5 million of assets within a calender period of 12 month. And we would also want to know if he is the one funding the markets empowerment, where has he gotten this K10 million from? We want people who are in state house to act above board, we want people who want to be President to act above board and I think Zambians deserve answers,” Kambwili said.
And Kambwili said government should immediately terminate the $1.2 billion Lusaka-Ndola dual-carriageway contract because it appeared to be marred by corruption.
“We would like to appeal to this government to immediately terminate and cancel the contract for the dual-carriageway from Lusaka to the Copperbelt, not that we don’t want the road, not that the people of Zambia don’t want the road, but I think there are more questions to be answered on the integrity and pricing of that contract. First and foremost, we want to know whether the contract was advertised. How many companies responded to the advert? What were the quotations of the other companies that competed for this road project? Surely $1.2 billion can’t be single-sourced. Nowhere in the world where a contract to the tune of $1.2 billion is single sourced. If it’s true that this was single sourced, we demand that the President, who went to open the project, should resign on moral grounds,” Kambwili said.
“The Minister of Infrastructure and Housing [Ronald Chitotela] should also resign on moral grounds, and people at RDA who were involved in awarding this contract should be disciplined. I think by and large, we cannot allow a few people to earn commissions on road projects. We have been so docile as Zambians not to question some of these unnecessary expenditure. Nobody had a problem with the cost of Mongu-Kalabo road because we all know the terrain of Western Province and because most of that road is suspended on very heavy concrete but what has necessitated the contract of 320 km from Lusaka into the Copperbelt, into Ndola to cost US$1.2 billion? I am convinced beyond reasonable doubt after consulting with engineers, very high profiled civil engineers, that this cost has been inflated because of people wanting to get commission. No wonder they rushed to go and commission this project.”
Kambwili further said Zambians would not tolerate investors coming to treat them like a piece of dirty cloth.
“We welcome all the investors, but the investors must act above board. We are not going to have an investor whether Chinese, Indian, Zambian, British, South African who is going to come and treat our Zambian like a piece of dirty cloth, we are not going to accept that. We want when the investor comes, they must realise that God knew why he put copper under the Zambian soil. If we may ask, why didn’t God put copper on the land of China? He came and put copper here in Zambia son that the people of Zambia can benefit. But what we are seeing now, the people of Zambia are not benefiting so much from their rich,” he said.
Meanwhile, Kambwili denied having formed the National Democratic Congress party saying he was still PF.
“Me registering National Democratic Congress party? That’s Mr Musenge there, the owner of National Democratic Party. Me I am PF, I don’t know anything about it, me I’m PF,” said Kambwili.