THE silence by the Law Association of Zambia (LAZ) in the corruption allegation of Justice Minister Wynter Kabimba is worrying and raises concerns, according to Southern African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (SACCORD).
SACCORD Information Officer Obby Chibuluma said LAZ must show interest in the matter of corruption especially that it involves one of its members Justice Minister Wynter Kabimba.
Mr. Chibuluma said that it was with keen interest that the people of Zambia were still waiting for the position that LAZ would take on the matter, adding that one of the roles of LAZ was to guide and interpret the law.
Welcoming the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) revelations that Mr. Kabimba and his counterpart at the Ministry of Defence were being investigated for allegations of corruption, Mr. Chibuluma said that there was need for LAZ to show interest in the matter.
“It is very important for the Law Association of Zambia (LAZ) to take interest in this matter because it involves their member who is also Justice Minister. Mr. Kabimba is not only an ordinary lawyer but a State Counsel and with those allegations being leveled against him and his colleague, we feel that ACC should speed up those investigations,” he said.
Mr. Chibuluma said that calls by the church to have Mr. Kabimba step down was justifiable, adding that it was only prudent that in the best interest and credibility of investigations both Ministers steps aside.
He said that it was gratifying that ACC made public the investigations against two senior cabinet ministers but that it was not enough that LAZ was silent on the matter when it had involved one of its member.
“Stepping down is a matter of morality and that is why we are saying that LAZ must show interest in this matter because it involves one of their member. We are aware that none of the Ministers is guilty but for transparency sake, it is morally right that they step down pending investigations,” said Mr. Chibuluma.
Mr. Chibuluma reminded the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) to inform Mr. Kabimba and Mr. Mwamba officially in writing about the investigations on them.
“We believe that leaders who are in those offices should have a character which is not questionable. We are happy that ACC has taken interest and should be able to investigate. We appeal to ACC to notify Kabimba and Mr. Mwamba about these investigations,” he said.
But the Anti Corruption Commission (ACC) director general Rosewin Wandi is reported to have said that the commission will be professional in the manner it would conduct the investigations
She said that ACC would investigate the two cabinet ministers facing corruption allegations with impartiality.
Ms. Wandi said that the commission would carry out the investigations against Justice Minister Wynter Kabimba and his counterpart in defence in a professional manner.
She has since appealed to the public to have confidence in the ACC as the investigations were initiated by the commission, saying there was no pressure from the ministers being investigated or government.