PF acting national chairperson Davies Chama says he does not understand why the UPND government has amplified the perception that Ministers are criminals, adding that politics is the only profession where people accuse each other of being thieves.

In an interview, Chama said UPND Ministers would equally be labeled as thieves and would be pursued vigorously once they left office.

“What we are planting is a very dangerous seed and it is a very sad episode in this country. I do not know why we as politicians do this to ourselves. Ministers are only 26 in the entire country and it is only politicians who insult each other that it is only politicians who steal and that other people who are even in control of these resources do not steal. And that there is no corruption in the private sector. There is a perception that corruption is only in government. I do not know why as politicians we have dented our names to an extent where to become a politician, you are now an endangered species,” he said.

“I do not know why this phenomenon has been amplified by the new dawn government that all Ministers are criminals and thieves. Equally, when they leave office, they will be thieves and they will be pursued vigorously. This is purely unacceptable. Politics is the only profession where you find people accusing each other as [being] thieves. You will not find lawyers calling themselves thieves. The current Speaker has declared $22 million in terms of assets as a lawyer. If it was a politician or Minister, he is being pursued for $320,000. Does it make sense? It does not make sense.”

Chama said there could be a decent way of getting into office than calling each other thieves.

“The only profession which calls each other thieves is Ministers and politicians. Why is it like this in this country? I do not know why. Even the late president Kenneth Kaunda, he was called all sorts of names including a criminal and that he had gotten $7 billion somewhere and people were looking for it but they never found anything. The man was as poor and as honest as he was serving the country. He was maligned when he was in office and even when he left office. Equally the same happened for president Chiluba,” said Chama.

“Why is it like this? I think there can be a decent way of getting into office than calling each other thieves. Every decent person who is honest is scared to get into issues of politics to serve people. Politics is a noble cause to serve and provide leadership and make sure we serve this country. But as politicians, we are embarrassing ourselves and we have exposed ourselves to a level where it is irredeemable. It is very sad and very embarrassing.”