By Brebner Changala
Now that some portions of the Wynter Kabimba Commission have been made public, with calls for the suspension and prosecution of some named government officials, I would like to draw attention to the following issues.
Firstly given the composition of the Commission, it was never in doubt what its findings and recommendations were going to be.
But even by the PF’s biased standard, the Commission has surpassed itself and it is now clear that some of the recommendations seem tailored to provide an excuse for the removal of the named serving officers and to have them replaced with PF cadres.
Since coming into power, the PF has habitually removed serving Chief Executive Officers (CEOs ) only to replace them with the handpicked PF cadres.
Such appointments have always been done without regard to the principles of corporate governance which require that CEOs be appointed by Boards.
The PF has been making appointments without even subjecting such cadres to any form of interviews.
This is all in violation of the PF’S pre -election promise that appointment to public office would be based on merit .
Since assuming to power, the PF has been doing the exact opposite. To ensure that only it’s cadres are appointed to these positions, the PF dissolved almost all parastatals and statutory bodies so that it can make the appointments without board involvement.
Examples of PF appointments made without due board approval, and contrary to corporate governance abound, but include ZESCO and ZAMTEL.
The call for the suspension of the named officers from TAZAMA , ZPPA , ERB and Ministry of Energy are another PF scheme to remove the officers and have them replaced with some PF cadres.
Why do we say so?
Let us consider some of the named officers.
1 MR LARGEMAN MUZELENGA , MANAGING DIRECTOR TAZAMA. We all know that TAZAMA does not procure oil. TAZAMA’s business is pumping feedstock from Dar-es – Salaam to Ndola on behalf of whoever imports the feedstock.
> It would be interesting to see how MR MUZELENGA participated in the alleged fraud or malpractice in the procurement of oil. It seems that his job would make a good offer to a PF Carder .
> 2. MR MUSENYESA – General Manager for TAZAMA OIL LIMITED. TAZAMA oil limited was formed to undertake certain logistical tasks on behalf of government. It is the government agent and receives and sells the fuel on behalf of government.
Again this company which is a subsidiary of TAZAMA is not involved in procurement . The only plausible explanation for the recommendation to suspend MR Musenyesa is to have his job given to a PF cadre.
> 3. MR BUTLER SITALI – Executive Director for ERB. The ERB is not involved in the procurement of oil. So we don’t know why the Commission recommends that MR Sitali should be investigated. What is even more surprising is that Mr. Sitali only joined the ERB as CEO In September 2010 by which time al the alleged oil contracts had already been concluded.
So we wonder how someone who was not there at the time of the contracts could have influenced or participated in the alleged malpractice.
Again, our only conclusion is that the PF wants to appoint it’s cadre to take over the job.
If the Commission was sincere in its work and if they didn’t just want to replace current CEOs they would have extended the investigations to those CEOs before MR SItali. But since that will not lead to any job for a PF cardre, the Commission found this to be unnecessary.
From the above, it is clear that the Wynter KAbimba’s commission is yet another PF misadventure which will not result in any prosecutions as it was biased and not backed by any evidence. To make matters worse, all the contracts which Kabimba says Zambia should suspend were duly approved by the Then Attorney General, Mumba Mulila who is back at the same office
As with the ZRA Commission which excited a lot of people but has yielded nothing to date, Wynters Commission of Inquiry is but another PF hoax.