Under UPND a nation sold to corruption, US $2.8bn gone!

Under UPND a nation sold to corruption, US $2.8bn gone!

First it was the gold scandal that played itself out at the Kenneth Kaunda International Airport. All the foreigners involved were let off the hook and reports of missing dollars are rife, while the State decided that it was in public interest to hold the prosecution of Zambians in camera, supposedly for national security reasons.

Now, we have US $2.8 billion laundered.

According to the Financial Intelligence Centre, during the quarter ended 31st December 2023, it disseminated 450 reports worth US D2.8 billion on suspected tax evasion, fraud, forgery and, or money laundering involving foreign nationals who were engaging in illicit financial flows (IFFs) to Asia. The reports have been forwarded to law enforcement for further investigations.

People are not stupid. We can all clearly see the aiding and abetting that is going on. The Minister of Finnace Dr Situmbeko Musokotwane and the Bank of Zambia must explain how and by whom was $ 2.8 billion laundered in 2023.

In the wake of fervent promises by President

Hakainde Hichilema to champion zero tolerance on corruption, Zambia finds itself ensnared in a web of deceit, with cancerous rot of corruption metastasising at an alarming rate. Despite the lofty rhetoric espoused by

Hichilema, the stark reality paints a grim picture. Under their administration, Zambia has become a breeding ground for money laundering, with an eye-watering $2.8 billion illicitly funnelled out of the nation’s coffers in 2023. And one can without shame proclaim zero tolerance to corruption! Today,

the pillars of corruption stand tall and unyielding, with the corruptors in key sectors such as fuel, fertliser and mining operating with brazen impunity, their ill-gotten gains lining their pockets while the nation languishes in economic despair. The stark juxtaposition between this government’s promises and its actions lays bare the utter bankruptcy of leadership, as Hichilema’s empty rhetoric crumbles under the weight of reality.

At the heart of this betrayal lies the President’s stubborn refusal to disclose his own business interests, a glaring hypocrisy that sets a dangerous precedent and undermines the very foundation of tranparency and accountability. By shielding his financial dealings from public scrutiny, the President sends a clear message that rules apply only to the governed and not those in positions of influence and power. He and his associates are above the law – do as I say, not as I do! Clearly, Hichilema has sent a powerful, yet covert message that ‘don’t imitate my behaviour but obey my instructions’. In doing so he has opened the season for grand corruption, fraud and plunder! The very things he ‘passionately’ condemned during the PF regime.

Suzy Kassem warned that, “When a plutocracy is disguised as a democracy, the system is beyond corrupt.”

Yet we know, as they say, that facts are threatening to those invested in fraud!

Complicit in this grand charade are the commercial banks, whose business is the most profitable in Zambia, and whose cozy relationship with money launderers facilitates the illicit flow of funds with reckless abandon. Despite their role in perpetuating financial crime, these banks face no sanctions or repercussions. They are shielded by an oversight mechanism that has failed miserably in its duty to safeguard the nation’s financial integrity.

Meanwhile, the governmemt shamelessely extols the exorbitant profits reaped by these banks, turning a blind eye to the moral bankruptcy that festers beneath the surface.

The time for platitudes and empty promises has long passed.

We have seen with our own eyes and testimony, as Jonathan Gash noted that “Fraud is the daughter of greed.”

The citizens of Zambia demand action,

accountability, and justice. It is incumbent upon every citizen to rise up and reclaim their nation from the clutches of corruption. To hold their leaders, the oversight agencies and the law enforcement agencies accountable for their betrayal of trust, and build a future founded on principles of transparency, integrity and justice.

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