Transparency International Zambia president Rueben Lifuka says the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) should not be sympathetic when investigating the political elite cited in corruption scandals.

Commenting on the move by the ACC to investigate Health Minister Dr Chitalu Chilufya for alleged corrupt practices, Lifuka said the ACC should act professionally and restore public confidence.

“It is our expectation that the ACC has done its homework for it to reach this stage in the investigation. We want to caution that there is an erosion in public trust in the ACC and this can only be restored if this body discharges its functions in an unfettered manner and should not be seen to be sympathetic towards the political elite. This is not to say we expect only one result but whatever the outcome of the investigation, the ACC should demonstrate the highest level of professionalism and independence,” Lifuka said.

Lifuka urged the ACC to conclude the investigations expeditiously.

“Transparency International Zambia takes note of the decision by the Anti Corruption Commission to investigate corruption allegations against Health Minister Dr Chitalu Chilufya. The ACC is mandated by law to investigate all allegations of corrupt practices regardless of a person’s social status or positional power that they hold. We do hope that these investigations will be concluded expeditiously. In this instance, we expect the ACC to conduct its activities in a professional manner and should be supported by all Zambians. We are confident that the Minister of Health will fully cooperate and enable the ACC to arrive at a reasoned way forward,” he said.

And Lifuka reminded the ACC to be updating the nation on the progress made in its investigations the same way it announced the start of the process.

“May we take this opportunity to remind the ACC to continue to update the general public on the progress or lack of progress made in these investigations, in much the same way that it has announced the start of this process,” said Lifuka.

He also appealed to members of the public to avoid prejudging the case involving the minister adding that an investigation is not always a sign of guilt.