Zambian CSOs have sticky fingers – Antonio

Antonio Mwanza says it is disgusting that institutions which are supposed to be demanding accountability and transparency from public officers are in the forefront of abusing donor money.

In a statement today, Mwanza, who is FDD spokesperson and deputy national secretary, asked police to quickly arrest officials from YALI, SACCORD and FODEP who were involved in the theft and misappropriation of donor money amounting to $1.9 million meant for monitoring the 2016 general elections.

“The money embezzled is part of the $3.5 million grant that was given to YALI et al by the UKAid through the British Council under the Zambia Accountability Project (ZAP) to ensure the delivery of transparent and credible elections. It is ‘revulsioning’ to note that the very institutions that ought to be the moral abiters in spearheading transparency and accountability in the conduct of public affairs are themselves in the forefront of abusing and misappropriating donor money,” Mwanza stated.

“It is no wonder that most of today’s Civil Society Organizations are nothing but a gang of lickspittle sycophants ready to be hired for a fee to speak against others in order to access donor money for personal aggrandisement. Instead of focusing on ensuring that the necessary institutional and legislative frameworks are reformed in order to enhance good governance, these famished mercenaries posing as Civil Society leaders are busy writing project proposals in order to syphon donor money. It is abohherent that people are now using the church, the civil society and politics to amass wealth at the expense of the majority.”

He stated that those involved in this scandal should be used as an example to others who might fall into the same trap.

“The fate of those involved in the misappropriation of donor money must serve as a deterrent to others with sticky fingers that crime doesn’t pay. People must learn to work hard for their money and stop resorting to writing sugarcoated project proposals to the donor community to pilfer ndalama za bazungu,” stated Mwanza.

         

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