The Church is perpetuating and promoting corruption and other electoral malpractices by the PF government due its failure to preach against the vices, says FODEP executive director MacDonald Chipenzi.
Mr. Chipenzi said that the Church has been promoting electoral malpractices by encouraging politicians to donate gifts to the houses of worship.
He told the Daily Nation that his organization was saddened and perturbed to note that instead of the Church preaching against corruption and electoral malpractices, there were in the forefront receiving gifts from PF in areas where there were by-elections.
Justice Minister Wynter Kabimba, on behalf of President Michael Sata, donated K25 million to the United Church of Zambia (UCZ) before he donated K5 million and promised to contribute K3 million every month till the completion of the church in Luangwa District where a by-election is about to take place
Mr. Chipenzi said that the donation to the Church in Luangwa was total electoral malpractice which the Church accepted with unbelievable cheer.
“Look at the Church, they should stand-up and refuse this corruption which comes in form of donations. We are disappointed that the church were reported as having received gifts or donation in petitioned election cases,” said Mr. Chipenzi.
By elections should not be encouraged but viewed as a gimmick to blind the Zambian people and entrench them into perpetual poverty adding that Members of Parliament who are crossing over to the ruling party are a let down to the nation and should not be trusted to offer good leadership.
He said that the Church had taken a compromised spot on so many issues of national governance which include failure to help the nation deal with the electoral malpractices perpetuated by politicians.
Mr. Chipenzi said that the Church should realize that its morality and integrity was questioned when they embrace such gifts which were perceived to be a form of corruption, adding that it was high time the Church put its house in order and spoke out on many issues of governance.
“That is why some of these churches cannot see corruption in whatever those in leadership are doing because they are benefiting through donations and gifts. Chipata Central seat was nullified because of the K1 million Kwacha which was donated to the Church and these are the things that we are asking the Church to avoid because they are putting the name of God into serious check,” he said.
He said that as an organization that promoted democratic principles and good governance, the Church was expected to remind Mr. Kabimba and President Sata that there was a by-election in that area and it was not right for them to carry out donations which would be viewed as vote buying.
Mr. Chipenzi said that it was shocking that the church had allowed itself to be abused by politicians, where they have even allowed politicians to preach and solicit for votes in church during a Sunday service.