Cage civil service plunderers

Government has a duty to explain to the people of Chongwe and Rufunsa, what has happened to their Constituency Development Funds (CDF).

The Government also owes Zambians an explanation on what has happened to tax payers’ money which was supposed to be channeled towards development projects in Chongwe and Rufunsa.

It is shocking that huge amounts of public money have continued being misappropriated and in some instants wantonly stolen by the very people who are supposed to protect it.

There had been many stories of civil servants dipping their fingers into the country’s purse, looting and plundering the meager resources meant for economic infrastructure development programmes.

The revelations by Transparency International Zambia that a staggering K3.3 million Constituency Development Fund (CDF) has been stolen are not only depressing but annoying.

And that the money has been stolen by civil servants raises serious questions about the safety of public resources in the hands of these public workers.

As a country, such grand abuse, misapplication and pure theft has been associated with politicians but at the rate things are going, it would seem that public resources are being looted from every quarter. 

This reasoning cannot be dismissed as the Auditor General’s reports are there as evidence.

No matter the measures put in place to deter the theft of public funds, it seems public workers are quick to device new ways of siphoning tax payers’ money.

Now that the Ministry of Local Government and Housing scam has been exposed, it won’t be long for another method of grand abuse of public resources to be crafted.

It is strange that this abuse of public resources goes on unabated even when all Government ministries have accountants and internal auditors.

The question that should be answered is whether internal auditors in ministries serve the purpose they are employed for or their primary role is to be participants in the loot and plunder of public resources.

And what about the Permanent Secretaries in ministries who are the controlling officers, what is their primary function if they can allow such huge amounts of money to be misappropriated without any notice?

What is excruciatingly painful is that the culprits of such economic heinous crimes are never brought to book and even as we discuss this pure theft of public money, the people involved are busy looking for another opportunity to steal with glee.

And so far, we are only talking about the Ministry of Local Government and Housing where K3.3 million has been siphoned by known civil servants and this time it had to take an NGO to expose the looting.

We commend TIZ for having taken the effort and risk of exposing such grand abuse and theft of public resources and it is our hope that they will get to other ministries for as far as we know, this plunder is not restricted to the Ministry of Local Government and Housing.

It is also our hope that the law enforcement agencies would not procrastinate in moving in to investigate the matter because the suspects of the crime are known.