RB´ Stripped immunity: Tit for Tat?

 By Lee Elias Tembo,

 

By and large, following the passage of a motion and subsequent removal of comrade Rupiah Banda´s immunity by 80 out of 158 Zambian law makers, the events surrounding this “saga” raises more questions than answers and henceforth, can not pass without sound debate and analysis.

Besides, this whole case has attracted both local and international  attention and could be benchmark for Patriotic Fronts´s (PF) generally perceived selective fight against corruption.

However, getting down to the nitty-gritty, is RB´s removal of immunity well intended or merely a crass political strategy aimed at destroying his recent earned and achieved highly respectable international political standing? Could the removal of his immunity open up the “Pandora\’s box” of politics of  “tit for tat”?.

Or is it a fight to completely destroy his political comeback as reported in certain online news tabloids? These are some of the perplexing questions that I have been subjected to critically digest in the hope of finding answers since Friday, the  15th of March, 2013.

In as much as I espouse the removal of immunity of a former head of state so as to answer to any criminal offence, I find it difficult to respect and have faith in the same system that seems to protect, defend and harbour perceived corrupt individuals merely because they are part of the ruling elite.

The recent corruption allegations against the Minister of Zambian Defence, Mr. Geoffrey Bwalya Mwamba  and Zambian Justice Minister, Wynter Kabimba, who himself defiantly refused to answer corruption questions before the authorities is a case in point and also questions the legitimacy of the so called fight against corruption.

The removal of former president Rupiah Banda´s immunity should not at any cost be an avenue to settle irrelevant old political scores on the expense of poor Zambian tax payers but rather an opportunity to let him clear his name from allegations of corruption, abuse of office,  money laundering if at all there is any and we move forward.

This is a critical time to fulfill and deliver a mammoth of 2011 campaign promises rather than political witch- hunting and character assassinations.

The late former president Chiluba´s immunity “saga” should remind us of how complicated this whole exercise will be. Huge some of money will be spent and hopefully, by the time the cases will be closed, both parties would be in good health to tell the Zambian people what benefits the whole case achieved.

This is also an opportunity for Zambia´s investigative wings to try and restore some dignity, confidence and respect in the eyes of the public  regarding the way  they have been dealing with cases of national interest.

In conclusion, Zambia´s political landscape and direction seems to be at cross roads. The ever growing tension and enmity between the party in government and the opposition might divide our country especially on ethnic lines and loose the peace that we have relatively enjoyed since 1964 despite the bogus promises from our leaders to transform our lives.

Zambians can not afford to loose both “peace” and “economic” freedom. To our leaders, if you can not fulfill the latter, please then do not temper with the former because posterity shall indeed judge you harshly.

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