Works and Supply Minister Mutotwe Kafwaya says subjecting all ministers to lifestyle audits will be a waste of time as only those suspected to be corrupt should be pursued.
And Kafwaya has supported President Edgar Lungu’s proposal to revisit the law which establishes the Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC) saying that the institution is angering people with its speculative reports.
Speaking when he featured on Hot FM’s Hot Seat programme, Thursday, Kafwaya who is also Lunte PF member of parliament said he personally did not have anything against being subjected to a lifestyle audit because he was living a simple life.
“The car [that] I came with here is an expensive car [and] I can’t afford it but the Zambian people afforded it for me. It’s a big car yes [and] because of my title and because His Excellency the President put me in a privileged position [so] I had to drive that car. But once this privilege is taken away, I won’t be able to afford that. I don’t care about my life being audited because I think that other than being privileged to serve Zambians, there is nothing special about me. There is really nothing special and I still live in Chilenje, I still live in a house that I lived in prior to my appointment, a house that I struggled to acquire. So I really don’t care. I can be audited,” Kafwaya said.
” For me, the system should be so serious that it keeps on detecting who is suspected to engage in corrupt systems, and you target those because if 40 ministers plus 10 provincial ministers and you say ‘let’s audit them,’ you will be going to Northern Province to audit a minister there, from there Eastern Province and all over the place [just] auditing ministers, committing public resources to people. So my view is that the way the law is sitting, the way the procedure is sitting is okay [that] you [only] target those you suspect and if I am suspected or you are suspected, we should be assessed. There is no problem about that but to commit resources like that, I find it [to be mere] politicking.”
And Kafwaya said the FIC was angering people by its speculative reports.
“What we will be getting year-in-year-out are trends which cannot even be substantiated. We need to have trends which we can substantiate. Look, who are you going to make accountable, from a trend that does not disclose a name, a trend that does not disclose an organization and the only thing we are seeing is that corruption has increased. It’s angering the people. Why should you make the country [to] speculate when there is an opportunity to just say ‘it is that minister, it is that private individual. They (FIC) may be carrying a wrong mandate if they can’t name the corrupt elements and they are not helping Zambians. What they are doing is to build anger in people,” said Kafwaya.
“The president has already done his part by making sure that the existence of the Anti-Corruption Commission is not tampered with. The president has done his part by making sure that Anti-Corruption receives its allocation in terms of resources and Anti-Corruption must keep working. They must go at whoever they think that is corrupt regardless of whether that person is a public individual or is a private individual because corruption does happen everywhere. And this is why we have sustained that institution because we recognize the presence of corruption not only in government but also in the private sector.”