Lusaka City Councilors have formed companies which are now being awarded contracts by the council.
And now Council employees have challenged Vice President Guy Scott to explain why the council committee on which, he and other senior party officials’ sit had allowed councilors to award themselves contracts for the supply of goods and services to the local authority without procedure.
The workers told the Daily Nation that they were a lot of irregularities going on at the council bordering on abuse of office and corruption which the Vice President should explain to the people of Zambia with respect to contracts awarded to councilors.
The workers cited a contract awarded to Finance, Human Resource and General Purposes Committee chairperson Christopher Shakafuswa the owner of Hatrick Enterprises worth over K200 million.
According to documentation given to the Daily Nation, PF councilors have registered various construction companies and were awarding themselves contracts for the supply of various goods and service.
The council progress report on Ward Development Fund as at 24th May 2013 shows that Hatrick Enterprises a company owned by PF councilor for Ngwerere Ward 19 Christopher Shakafuswa and his wife Sibongile of Ngwerere was paid over K178, 500 million for supplying gravel in Ngwerere ward 19 in Mandevu, Harry Mwanga Ward 11 in Kanyama and Kapwepwe Ward 25 in Matero constituencies reportedly without declaring interest.
The report also shows that Mr. Shakafuswa’s company was on 21st January, 2013 paid K24, 750 000 on cheque number 1809 for supplying 20 tons of gravel, while another K24, 750 000 was paid on 4th April 2013 for the final delivery of gravel for Ngwerere Ward 19.
Mr. Shakafuswa’s company was also paid over K65 million for supplying 20 tons of gravel in Harry Mwanga Ward 11 in Kanyama Constituency on 5th April 2013.
In Matero Constituency, Mr. Shakafuswa’s company was paid K50 million for supplying 20 tons of gravel in Kapwepwe Ward 25.
The official said, “Mr. Shakafuswa is chairperson for the Finance, Human Resource and General Purposes Committee which looks at tenders, but the committee which he chairs awarded him a contract without declaring interest. The company that he co-owns with his wife Sibongile called Hatrick Enterprises was contracted to do road rehabilitation in three wards valued at over K178, 500 million.”
The officials complained that it was sad that even Vice President Scott, Kabwata Member of Parliament Given Lubinda, Lusaka Mayor Daniel Chisenga and his deputy Mayor Mulenga Sata did not question why contracts were awarded to a PF cadre (councilor) without procedure.
“The Vice President Dr. Guy Scott who is also MP for Lusaka Central, Kabwata MP Given Lubinda, Mayor Daniel Chisenga and his Deputy Mulenga Sata are members of the Finance, Human Resource and General Purposes Committee have endorsed such kind of total abuse of office.
The Vice President is aware because he has seen this report as councilor. I challenge anyone to take you to these wards and seen the kind of works being done and the gravel being supplied,” said the official.
The official also revealed to the Daily Nation that the same committee chaired by Mr. Shakafuswa awarded Hatrick Security Services Limited another company owned by Mr. Shakafuswa and his wife to train council police officers in tactical and physical training from May 7th to 8th June 2012 and over K50 million was paid off.
“The council is losing out so much money in services that are not delivered. For example, we have been running these training of our police officers in conjunction with the Police on a gratis (free) basis but the councilors sat and awarded themselves a contract to train our officers. What knowledge do they have in security and policing?” wondered the official.
The official said that there was need for the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) to investigate the allegations of abuse of office and corruption involving councilors and other senior government officials which he said was horrifying.
“There is too much abuse of funds by PF councilors; almost all the councilors have registered their own companies as individuals or proxies. But we have decided to single out for now Hatrick because the evidence is very clear that the owner is a councilor and chairperson for the committee that awards contracts. These monies were not supposed to be paid because the council has the capacity to do such works.”
The Finance Committee comprises of Christopher Shakafuswa as chairperson, Emmanuel Chanda deputy, Robinson Kalota, Given Lubinda, Maurice P. Piyo, Jiptus Mwanza, Princess Nkomeshya, McBride Sekeleti, Dr. Guy Scott, Potipher Tembo and Mulenga Sata and Daniel Chisenga as ex officials.