Confirmed reports that the Energy Regulation Board was not only irregularly appointed but that all the Board members were Bemba, some not even qualified to serve on the Board have resulted in the dismissal of all senior Lozi executives accused of leaking the information to the opposition.
Those dismissed include Executive Director and chief executive officer Butler Asimbuyu Sitali, Board Secretary Lishomwa Nawa Muuka and Dr. Mushiba Nyamazana the Director Economic Regulation on allegations that they were leaking classified information to the media and the opposition.According to officials within ERB, Mr. Sitali and Lishomwa as legal counsel of the institution advised government that the appointments made were illegal and unconstitutional but that the Minister insisted on bringing cadres on board.
“The executive director informed them that it was illegal to appoint 11 members to seat on the board. The correct number was seven but that the Minister insisted that he appointed eleven despite being given the legal advise and implication of such appointments on the company,” said the official.
The offificials also said that the dismissal of the trio was based on tribal lines, adding that the PF government was not ready to work with other tribes.
On February 21, 2013, UPND Monze Central Member of Parliament Jack Mwiimbu raised a point of order as to whether or not the PF government through the Ministry of Mine, Energy and Water Development, the supervising ministry of ERB was in order to breach the provisions of the Energy Regulation Act, No. 16 of 1995.
In his point of order, Mr. Mwiimbu said that according to the ERB Act of 1995, the total number of board members must be seven and not 11 as appointed by the PF government and that no member of the board should be drawn from any political party.
Mr. Mwiimbu further wondered whether the PF government was in order to breach the laws enacted by parliament.In response Justice Minister Wynter Kabimba said that it was interesting that the breach of the law was raised as a point of order in parliament instead of people employed to advise the Minister before such an error was committed.“Since Honorable Mwiimbu does not work for ERB then the source of the information is within ERB. What then would be the motive of such information leakage if it is not intended to undermine the public image and that of government as one composed of men and women who act with impunity in matters of law?” he asked.
Mr. Kabimba said that he believed in a loyal and faithful civil service as the engine of social and economic development, adding that anyone who attempts to undermine the development processes of the PF which intends to deliver Zambians from poverty, hunger diseases illiteracy, inequity and social injustice should be regarded as enemies.