Speaking with the media today, Kabimba said President Michael Sata’s government “will not shy away from repossessing all previous state firms” that were privatised by the MMD government due to alleged corruption. He said the PF government will leave no stone unturned when it comes to “fighting corruption.”
Kabimba’s announcement will come as a shock to a number of foreign investors in Zambia, who were previously reassured by the new government that their investments would not face expropriation.
Warning foreign investors that the Zambia was “not interested in working with those who engage in corruption,” Kabimba said the PF government was elected to “serve the interest of Zambians and not to serve the interest of foreign elements.”
“One of the things that we made fundamentally clear during our campaign was that we were going to fight corruption and that, in fighting corruption, any transaction that was entered into by the previous [government], which was tainted with corruption to the detriment of the interest of the Zambian people,” Mr. Kabimba said. “We shall reverse that transaction because it is not the job of any government to engage in acts of corruption against its own people.”
The Patriotic Front government has already reversed the privatisation of a 75% stake in Zamtel, the railway concession to RSZ, and the state seizure of Finance Bank back to its original owner, a financial supporter of the ruling party. In none of these transactions was a corruption case proven before the courts.
Speaking about the reversal of the RSZ concession yesterday, Finance Minister Alexander Chikwanda said the acquisition has been necessitated by mismanagement of Zambia Railways infrastructure and rolling stock, leading to deterioration of assets and resultant loss to the nation as a whole.