Monday, December 03, 2012

DPP urges fight against financial crime

DPP urges fight against financial crime
By Agness Changala
Sun 02 Dec. 2012, 11:40 CAT

DIRECTOR of Public Prosecutions Mutembo Nchito has urged prosecutors and investigators to fight financial crime and prevent its negative impact on the country's economy. Nchito said in an interview after witnessing the graduation of 22 prosecutors and investigators at Zambia Institute of Advanced Legal Education (ZIALE) on Friday that all crime should be fought with resolve.

He observed that the country was at a stage when there was increased financial crime which posed threats to the economy. Nchito said financial crime should be addressed because it destroyed the lives of many citizens.

"If we do not, it means you do not collect sufficient taxes, we are not able to have sufficient revenue for the government and if the government does not have sufficient revenue, it cannot provide services," Nchito said. "So it immediately translates into things like poor maternal health and poor health generally among others."

Nchito also said like all other crimes, financial crime undermined the rule of law.

"And when you undermine the rule of law, you undermine democracy. When you undermine democracy, you undermine the ability of the state to function as an organised state and therefore, we are going back into a non-civilised situation," he said.

Nchito further said the government was positioning itself to address all crime regardless of who was involved.

"We will fight whether it's in corporate or individuals, whether it's in the mining area or other sectors of the economy. Whether it's in the area of taxation or corruption, we are positioning ourselves to fight crime," he said.

Earlier, Nchito said it was the duty of prosecutors to enforce the rules set for everyone.
And Attorney General Mumba Malila said the rule of law demanded that those on the wrong side of it were prosecuted.

He said the prosecution of those who do wrong should be done effectively as a way to deter would-be offenders.

ZIALE director Palan Mulonda said the course had been restructured with the aim of making it more relevant to institutions such as Zambia police, Zambia Army, and Zambia Air Force among others.
Mulonda said prosecutors had a role to play in enhancing compliance with the rule of law.

He said the skills that had been imparted in them during their two weeks of training should be utilised to the best of their ability.

Mulonda also said the institute intended to go to various institutions and monitor the performance of those who had been trained.

He said in the past the institute had received concerns that graduates hardly went to court.

"We will monitor for the next three months to see how best you are making use of the skills. If you do not, it means you are doing nothing," said Mulonda.

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