FORMER Archbishop of Lusaka Telesphore Mpundu says citizens should raise their voices louder on corruption.
In an interview, Archbishop Mpundu said when corruption embedded itself in a country, it was difficult to get rid of.
“We the people who are concerned should raise our voices a lot harder, a lot louder. We should have groups with our representatives. When corruption gets on a community and that community happens to be a nation, it is extremely difficult, extremely hard to get rid of it. It is up to us as citizens when we observe this going on, to come out and to condemn it and to give evidence. People must be organised, in democratic countries, they have pressure groups and watchdogs who are watching and saying ‘this is happening’, then we make it public, that this is what is happening ‘we have evidence here and we have all the documentation that is needed. If you are not going to do anything then we are going to start to decampaign you’. But nothing like that is happening, what we have right now is cry babies from the previous government ‘this is not happening, you are not doing this’. People must be told to come together and let your voice be heard, you have to have evidence, then we are going to go forward,” he said.
He said suspects involved in corrupt activities should be prosecuted even though they admit to being involved in wrongdoing.
“How do you freeze assets without knowledge that these assets have been obtained corruptly. If they have been obtained corruptly, then the law has been broken, the people who are involved must be indicted, then prosecuted if found guilty and put behind bars. This is what our country must be, if you do that, you will know you will end up behind bars. You broke the law and the law must take its course, period. This is why we are so poor because people got away with assets belonging to the nation,” said Archbishop Mpundu.
“You see, you admit that you were involved in wrongdoing, the law must take its course. People who have been suspected of doing wrong must be brought to book, they have to be prosecuted, they have to be investigated. If you come out clean and say yes, this is what I did, maybe your sentence would not be as long but you have to pay, you have to go to jail as well. So the PF, you cannot simply say everything is okay because you declared, no you have to be punished.”