Saturday, October 01, 2011

Sata orders probe of Zamtel, FBZ sale

Sata orders probe of Zamtel, FBZ sale
By Ernest Chanda and Patson Chilemba
Sat 01 Oct. 2011, 11:30 CAT

PRESIDENT Michael Sata has ordered the Minister of Justice to probe the sale of Zamtel and Finance Bank. And President Sata has with immediate effect dissolved the Energy Regulation Board (ERB). Meanwhile, the President has ordered labour minister Fackson Shamenda to quickly work out a meaningful minimum wage for all workers across the country.

Speaking after he swore in Vice-President Guy Scott, Cabinet and deputy ministers at State House yesterday, President Sata said he needed a report on the sale of the two companies within 30 days.

First Republican president Dr Kenneth Kaunda and senior chief Bright Nalubamba of the Ila people of Namwala district also attended the swearing-in ceremony.

He further ordered the Minister of Justice to probe the National Pension Scheme Authority (NAPSA)'s US $98 million funding of the Zambia National Building Society expansion project.

President Sata also promised to constitute a commission of inquiry into the operations of Zesco Limited.

"I've appointed the Minister of Justice to look into the sale of Finance Bank. We want to see the sale of Finance Bank; was it transparent or was it fraudulent? And you have to look into the sale of Zamtel. The people of Zambia suffered to build Zamtel so it cannot just be given away for nothing. So I need that report within 30 days," President Sata said.

"We also heard corruption in Zesco and I intend to set up a commission of inquiry. What we need to do is do unto others as you would wish them do unto you. And Justice deputy minister Dr Simbyakula you can also probe the US $98 million NAPSA issue."

And President Sata said he dissolved the ERB because of massive corruption in the procurement of fuel.

He has since appointed a six member commission of inquiry to be headed by Lusaka lawyer Wynter Kabimba to probe the operations of the dissolved Board.

"The corruption in ERB; we have been buying fuel which has been purchased without tender. And the Minister of Energy was supposed to look at the benefits of the people of Zambia. We were supposed to have three price reductions of pump fuel," he said.

"Therefore we have resolved to deal with this matter. And the measures we have done is, I have with immediate effect dissolved the Energy Regulation Board. And I have appointed a commission which is going to be headed by Mr Wynter Kabimba. And what we want is to bring transparency," he said.

Meanwhile, President Sata has ordered Shamenda to revise the minimum wage for all workers.

"Are we not ashamed that 20 years, the minimum wage is K400, 000? I want that minimum wage revised immediately," President Sata said as people applauded.

"What country are we where K15 billion remains unpaid gratuity to civil servants? And K8 billion to the Judiciary, and some of this gratuity, which I have to appoint a Commission of Inquiry, they were supposed to pay one person K500 million for being at the NCC National Constitutional Conference; that's how extravagant we were."

And President Sata ordered the Minister of Home Affairs to assist police probe the purchase of vehicles by the MMD during the campaign period.

"Police on their own; what they've done is very commendable. We don't want any revenge, we want what belongs to the people of Zambia to be for the people of Zambia. Those who are in home affairs,let's also assist the police because there was also corruption in Zambia Revenue Authority over the purchase of MMD vehicles," he said.

On mining, President Sata said there would be no more export of minerals without the approval of the Bank of Zambia.

"God in His own wisdom gave us wealth through minerals. Why should we just exploit it and let it like that because of corruption? With immediate effect nothing will be exported out of Zambia unless confirmation certificate has been gotten from the Bank of Zambia," said President Sata.

"The kwacha has become weak, and the kwacha can only become strong if it is protected by putting in new measures. I would like to believe that our new measures will protect the kwacha."

Earlier before swearing in the new cabinet, President Sata ordered newly-appointed defence deputy minister Colonel Panji Kaunda to go and dress formally.

Col Panji was dressed in a golf shirt and a pair of shorts before the President ordered him to go and change.

Later Col Panjii came back dressed in a striped grey suit.

Labels: , ,


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home