GREGORY Cifire says corruption in the PF government has escalated into utter criminality where leaders are stealing with freedom.
Cifire, who is Southern Africa Network Against Corruption (SANAC) executive director, noted that the PF government glorified corruption.
He lamented that it was disheartening that government leaders were now the ones in the forefront deriving benefits from every contract in the government.
“The government position at the moment is that corruption is okay, for as long as you don’t get everything. The biggest problem that will bring the PF down is this issue of corruption!” Cifire said when he featured on Muvi TV’s The Assignment programme on Sunday evening.
“If you go anywhere in Lusaka today, [you will find that] big, nice-looking buildings are for ministers – those that are in the corridors of power. They have taken away businesses from us the ordinary people. Those days, people like us from compounds in Mtendere, Kalingalinga used to go to the inquiries and supply even bulbs but that thing is no longer there. All those businesses are taken over by the politically-connected. We used to supply beans at Ministry of Home Affairs, kapenta at police but that [now is for the] politically-connected. What have you left for us the ordinary citizens?”
He said the problem with people who were involved in corruption was that they amassed more than what they desired.
“Corruption blinds! Going forward, we need reforms…The corruption now weighs heavier than the 1991-2001 corruption. That corruption that time was child’s play [but] this one is criminality – people steal with impunity! People are stealing everything for the people. Go in the compounds; people are crying that they don’t have food. We have never seen corruption in the history of Zambia as we have seen now [and] my prayer is that it will not get worse than this. The corruption is open for everyone to see and the institutions that have been charged with fighting corruption have all been paralysed. You may ask: where is the Anti-Corruption Commission? Where is the Drug Enforcement Commission?” lamented Cifire.