ZAWA officers write to ACC over corruption in current leadership

June, 2013

The Director General

Anti-Corruption Commission

LUSAKA.

Attention: Madam Rosewin Wandi

Uhf;

Office of the President

Minister of Tourism

Permanent Secretary – Tourism

Dear Madam and Honourables,

IRREGULARLITIES AT THE ZAMBIA WILDLIFE AUTHORITY

I am hereby writing on behalf of ZAWA (Zambia Wildlife Authority) members of staff and members of the committee.

I would like to report irregularities which has been occurring in the past 3 (months) and in particular in a meeting which took place on the 31st May, 2013 at 8am in the morning in the ZAWA board meeting in Chilanga. The following participants where present;

a)     Chairman of the Board   Mr Guy Robinson

b)      Board Member                                    Mr Timothy Mushibwe

c)     The Director General      Mr Zane Vlahakis

d)     Legal Advisor                        Mr Kombe

e)     Acting VET Director         Mr Vincent Nyirenda

f)      Mazabuka Veterinary     Mr Ian Paulson

 

In the meeting few discussions passed by the sole decision of Mr Robinson the Chairperson which are in the direct conflict of and against regulations and the law of Zambia. Those decisions were not in line with the constitutional law and should not be permitted to pass. We are all well aware that Mr. Mushibwe (ZAWA board member) is the Chairperson for Africa Parks and ZAWA board. In a decision that was directly influenced by him and Mr Robinson, Africa Parks were allowed to open hunting rights and where given the quarter for Black Lechwe to be the sole company to issue licences. Mr. Mushibwe showed a great displeasure when a low quarter was given to Africa Parks so in with that Mr Robinson has joined the research quarter and local hunters quarter instructing Mr Vincent Nyirenda (Acting VET Director) directly without any specific assessment to increase the quarter between 60 to 80 animals avoiding research to carry out a vital duty of animal research. Please note that the Hon. Minister issued a statement burning all hunting until;

a)     Animal census will be carried out.

b)     Administrative issues concerning tenders for hunting concessions, as you can see Mr Timothy Mushibwe influenced ZAWA to allow Africa Parks to operate yet they are not registered outfitters.

 

In the second resolution Mr Robinson instructed Mr Kombe the Legal Advisor to cancel animal transfer permits from few capture companies and issue new permits permitting his personal friend and personal Veterinary Doctor Ian Paulson who was present in the meeting against all regulations of tender procedures (he was awarded a single sourcing practice by Mr Robinson). Mr Robinson instructed Ian Paulson to submit his prices for food, medication, sales of animals which belong to Mr Paulson and transfer costs for animals and erecting of boma at Livingstone which was already under construction by ZAWA labour force in Livingstone.

Mr Robinson gave the feeling the decision has made already before this particular meeting took place. Mr Robinson instructed Mr Kombe ie verbal instructions in front of everybody to find faults and reasons to cancel the pre-existing contracts against all recommendations of all rules and regulations. We hereby come to understand that the Legal Advisor and The Acting VET Director Mr Kombe and Mr Nyirenda are aware that this is against all regulations. Further to that Mr. Robinson himself gave Mr. Kombe instructions to write a letter to The Zambia Public Procurement Authority nominating Mr Paulson as the new Game Capture Company to do the job. Reason given was that there are not enough animals in the Kafue National Park; Let me advise that before issuing of any permit for any capture and transfer of animals been done and issued environmental study impact has to be carried out which was not done in this case. Although one which is already existing in the VET services Mr Robinson dismissed any job or assessment which was carried out by ZAWA and called it “useless and unprofessional” without him looking to analyse at any environmental assessments.

 

Example No.1

Mr Vlahakis had instructed us to transfer one lion to Mr Peter Fischer’s farm in Mwinilunga which we are very capable of doing as we have done such an assignment before. But Mr Robinson overruled Mr Vlahakis’ instruction and awarded the contract to Mr Paulson without any other quotations against following regulations.

 

Example No.2

Mr Vlahakis instructed and prepared all the travel documents for employees to Livingstone to build a boma to accommodate animals to Livingstone Park in accordance with  Hon Minister Instruction. We were called back due to the fact that Mr Robinson cancelled our trip and once again awarded the contract to Mr Ian Paulson who is his personal friend.

Once again, as you can see as Zambian labourers we were told that we are very useless and unprofessional and not capable of the job we were tasked to do. We are witnessing an internal conflict between the DG and the Chairman completing against each other for authority. We as the labour are left to witness such a struggle of power as everyone is aware ZAWA is at stalemate and all the activities transferred to few individuals. We are aware that Mr. Robinson advocating openly for Mr Paulson to become Head of Research & VET services at ZAWA. We all think jobs such as these should be nominated to indigenous Zambians.

 Example No.3  

Mr Robinson has given all the black Lechwe quarter to African Parks to sell and by doing so he has created a monopolized system.

Example No.4

Between the Conservancies which were allowed to hunt also at Mushingashi which Mr Robinson is the Chairman of the board right at Mushingashi

Example No.5

Mr Robinson instructed Vincent to get quotations on animals that he has for sale to Livingstone. Those animals are in the same for 4 years, they were inter breeding and their gene pool is very very poor. Mr Paulson failed to sell them due to that effect and Mr Robinson influenced to sale them to Livingstone Park. In the same vein, it has come to my attention that Mr Robinson and Mr Mushibwe are orchestrating a confiscation of Sable animals at Leopards Hills farm and have the intention to lift up the export ban in the manner to profit in this move.

As you can see I haven’t listed the conflicts of interests and the hidden agenda of some board members.

Madam, You have been mandated by His Excellency The President of Zambia HE Mr M.C Sata and by the Constitution of Zambia to investigate and probe every member of public or institution which shows disregard to the laws in Zambia. In the past 35years of my Wildlife experience I didn’t not participate in such behaviour of board members, let me remind you the Chairman of the board is there to receive advise and recommendation from the sub0-committee and the DG and bring it to the board meeting for decisions. It’s clearly demonstrated that the Chairman is disrespecting any rules and regulations in making decisions singly handed.  Mr Timothy Mushibwe and Mr Guy Robinson should be questioned for legitimacy due to their affiliation and companies that they personally overrule the Hon. Minister’s decisions   of the ban on hunting and issue in their own decisions to allow their companies to be operating while others are not. They have dismissed from duty Zambian employees by intimidating them with investigations and false allegations therefore with the employees of ZAWA already submitted petition to His Excellence The President by submitting to the higher office.

We are also requesting you to ask Mr Kombe, Mr Nyirenda, Mr Vlahakis and Mr Mushibwe what their other intentions are in relation to dismissing more other Zambians from work.

Sincerely,

ZAWA WORKERS

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