MMD president Nevers Mumba says the current actions being taken at the Ministry of Health to restore confidence are too minimal compared to the crimes committed against the Zambian people.
In an interview, Mumba said cleaning the rot at the Ministry of Health would take political will to stamp out corruption.
“We noticed that just recently one of our corporate partners threatened that if the mess at the Ministry is not dealt with and the corruption is not dealt with, we risk not being supported in terms of the support we get from the sector. Now, have the efforts by the Minister helped to change that image? Again, absolutely not! Time has come for the PF to recognise that swift movements on matters of corruption are extremely important. We commend that they removed the minister but there are more people connected to the scam. The scam could not have been done by the Minister alone. There is still a feeling in most Zambians that there is a lot that is still rotten in the Ministry of Health,” Mumba said.
“The actions taken are too little too late and the only way we can save our image internationally is not only to change Ministers, but also to change the approach in how we are handling the Ministry of Health. All the issues of expired medicines need to be brought to a place where Zambians feel comfortable that government has put in place measures that will ensure that does not happen again. Changing boards, we did it as MMD, we were the experts in creating and changing boards, but those do not solve the problem at hand, it is political will and the decision by the Head of State together with his Cabinet to say never again are we going to have a corrupt ministry or a department of government. That is what we are waiting for, that is what we haven’t seen yet.”
Mumba said the distribution of defective health materials was a criminal matter and that government should allow further investigations into the matter.
“What Zambians want to see are drastic changes, drastic decisions by government and to allow these investigations to go where they need to go. They don’t have to cartel it because someone is too powerful, they cannot touch them. I think this is a criminal matter that demands an emergency reaction from the President and Cabinet because that was a suicidal act by government to give expired toxic medicines to its citizens. I think the action being taken at the Ministry is very minimal compared to the crimes committed by this government,” said Mumba.
“MMD will not just end what is happening in the Ministry of Health, I worked under Levy Mwanawasa who was very clear in the fight against corruption. We had a very strong strategy that made civil servants including Ministers extremely afraid to go contrary to the regulations set by government. Zambians must be assured that Nevers Mumba in government as President is going to seek the dying way of these corrupt activities that have cost the ordinary Zambian so much in terms of a broken economy and terrible lifestyle of Zambians, because the money is being shared amongst the few. Even their health is threatened by their own leader by providing to the Zambian people expired toxic and dangerous medicines.”