United Progressive People (UPP) president Saviour Chishimba says the total extent of looting of national resources from the Rupiah Banda-led MMD regime to the current PF government has reached US$15 billion, which is equivalent to K150 billion.

And Chishimba says State House has reduced its dignity to that of conmen when it defended the US$34.5 million Malawi-Zambia maize scandal.

Speaking when he featured on the Lusaka Star Radio programme on UNZA FM, Chishimba claimed that the Rupiah Banda-led MMD regime and PF had looted a combined total of US$15 billion since assuming office.

“We told the people of Zambia the extent of the loot, that during the reign of the PF, US $5 billion had been looted! That is the total amount of money, which from our investigation with evidence, had been looted. And part of that was externalised, we even named the countries in Mauritius where one of the officials was seen with a huge amount of money in Barclays Bank Mauritius, depositing the money and somebody took a video of that. We even know one of the former leaders who has 324 mansions in Belgium! There are several countries to where these funds have been taken. But as I am speaking to you today, the total extent of the loot if you start from the Rupiah Banda-led MMD regime, through to the current one, it’s US$15 billion, that is K150 billion, double the national budget! This is money which is in private pockets of a few looters,” Chishimba said yesterday.

Narrating the Zambia-Malawi maize gate scandal, which emerged in January last year and involved US$34.5 million, Chishimba also insisted that a sound leader cannot sacrifice the nation to “whisky-drinking relationships.”

“And you will also recall that we just decided to pick only one case, [the] US $34.5 million maize scandal. Again, we had many people who were dismissive of what we were saying, they were dismissing everything! As we went on to produce concrete evidence, signed documents. These are not altered documents. The government of Malawi, where there is a serious government took up the case, I am a hero in Malawi as I am speaking to you; lives were saved in Malawi. The President of Malawi didn’t look at Dr Chaponda as his relative. In fact, when you have relationships over whisky, relationships over useless things, you cannot sacrifice the nation to whisky-drinking relationships,” Chishimba added.

“Dr Mutharika decided to act against his own number one strong man in the party, Chaponda. He fired him as minister. In fact, before that, people were saying there is no maize scandal, Chishimba lishilu (is mad) he must be taken to Chainama [hospital]. And defence was coming right from State House, reducing the dignity of State House to be the defending centre of corruption. State House is the symbol of our national dignity. By the time State House is speaking, there must be dignity, the decorum and everything that has to do with the nation, because that is the nerve centre of Zambia’s very existence.”

He said the PF government was lacking seriousness in fighting corruption.

“You can imagine how that (Malawian) government took this matter very seriously because I am trying to demonstrate before you how this current regime is lacking seriousness together with their fellow recycled looters in some of these political groupings that are not in government, but they are the same looters who have brought us to where we are today as a nation. So, President Mutharika appointed a commission of inquiry, the Parliament of Malawi assigned two committees, the committee on agriculture and the Public Accounts Committee. They came all the way from Malawi to come and receive the evidence from the UPP. They sat at the Malawi High Commission and we went to submit the evidence. Both reports, that of the omission of inquiry by President Mutharika named Dora Siliya and the chief facilitator of corruption and that Chaponda met President Edgar Lungu at State House, they sealed up the deal. State House was directly involved, and as per documentary evidence, which we submitted. And, you can imagine, State House even altered documents, reducing the dignity of State House to conmen who alter documents,” he lamented.

“I did say that there is total capture of the Anti-Corruption Commission by these looters. You also recall that we prevented Zamtel from being sold, they wanted to sale Zamtel because of the godfather who is ruling this country from behind because this country is on auto pilot. Zambia is like under the ruler-ship of triple six (666). Those people who are under 666 have no mercy. Today, what UPP was able to identify as a biggest problem is now being acknowledged by everyone who has seen the extent of the loot. I am happy that the people of Zambia have joined in this crusade and I want to assure you that do not ever imagine or think even for a moment that this struggle is not going anywhere, a day of reckoning shall come. And I want to say this, that when that day arrives, it will not be about personalities,” Chishimba warned.

Meanwhile, Chishimba, who is also aspiring candidate for the Lusaka mayoral seat, said that by God’s grace, he would rule Zambia one day.

“We in the UPP pride ourselves in being the only one with the most cogent and most effective plan of taking all the power to implement programmes. We are going to run Zambia, in the day by God’s grace we shall form government through countries in each and every city; each and every district shall become a country. So, we want to showcase to the people of Zambia that when we take over this Lusaka city, together with you the people of Lusaka, that a city which has a leader who is firm and visionary, can be transformed without even depending on central government financing. Lusaka city must have all the departments implementing 100 per cent the programmes of government,” said Chishimba.