Probe high level corruption

THE Trafigura oil scandal in which some unscrupulous people made Zambia lose US$300 million through the procurement of petroleum products at more than double the global price must be investigated and the culprits in the economic plunder be brought to book, a conerned citizen has said.

And Ms Chileshe has charged that the disbanded Task Force on Corruption established by former president Levy Mwanawasa for good reasons was turned into a conduit for committing financial crimes by those who managed it and that President Edgar Lungu should consider revisting the operations of the task force because it was wantonly abused.

Ms Chileshe said the people involved in the Trafigura oil scandal were known and still available and it was only fair that they should be made to account for their corrupt actions because Zambians were robbed of millions of dollars through the transaction.

She said President Lungu, who has made poverty and corruption as his worst enemies, should ensure that he gets to the bottom of the Trafigura saga, adding there should never be sacred cows in the fight against the scourge.

She said Zambia spent far too much in the procurement of oil through Trafigura and that some of the people who were pontificating of being corrupt-free were in fact deeply involved in some of the worst financial scandals but were freely roaming the streets and demonising selected citizens including President Lungu.

Ms Chileshe said Zambians were still wondering why Government had to procure 216 million litres of petrol and 21 million litres of diesel at an astronomical price of US$500 million instead of US$200 million which was at the time the ruling price on the international market.

“Some people have climbed on rooftops exclaiming that President Lungu has no capacity to fight corruption but Zambians especially those of us who are patriotic members of the PF know that some people took advantage of their being in Government to enrich themselves. We still have the Trafigura oil scandal on our minds and I am making a passionate and clarion call to President Lungu to consider revisiting the scandal so that it is investigated.

We want those involved to account for their financial sins against Zambians. The people of Zambia lost US$300 million in that illicit deal,” Ms Chileshe said.  She said the people involved in the Trafigura oil procurement contract hould be made to account and see how best this could be addressed because it was most likely money could have gone into private pockets, which was now being used to scandalize and malign President Lungu’s administration.

And Ms Chileshe said the operations of the disbanded Task Force on Corruption should be investigated because the ad hoc institution was not only abused but was turned into an instrument of vengeance and retribution by a clique of individuals and it therefore did not serve the purpose for which it was established.

She said it was public knowledge that a number of assets and millions of Kwacha were recovered but Zambians had not been told where the recovered properties had disappeared to.

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