Parastatal and PS´s appetite for luxury cars is Shocking Amidst HH’s Prudent Preaching
…says Ambassador Mwamba in live 5FM interview
2nd August 2022
The huge appetite heads of state-owned enterprise (SoEs) and Permanent Secretaries have to own expensive luxury cars at the expense of taxpayers is appalling and must be nipped in the bud according to Ambassador Emmanuel Mwamba.
Ambassador Mwamba said the greed is totally against President Hakainde Hichilema´s call for ´frugality ‘as the Zambian economy continues to stand on its knees due to local and international challenges.
Most Zambians that voted for President Hichilema, today cannot afford three meals a day or better still raise money for public transport as the poor get poorer in the southern African country due to high costs of fuel and electricity among others.
“There seems to be a huge disconnect between what President Hichilema wants in order to run the economy and his quasi-government officials including Permanent Secretaries,” said Ambassador Mwamba.
The former Permanent Representative of Zambia to the African Union said, “in one breath the President says don’t buy expensive luxury cars and the next day the Minister of Finance Situmbeko Musokotwane sneaks in a Supplementary budget of K22 billion about US$1.4 billion, K14 million of it meant specifically to buy luxury 4×4 cars for DEC, teaching service commission and others that don’t need them. This is criminal and disrespectful to President Hichilema´s honest directive. Why doesn’t he fire these people who defy him openly?”
Mr Mwamba said Zambia under UPND is littered with a huge appetite of the need for luxury vehicle from loss making companies like ZESCO that was stopped by civil society and opposition from buying 21 luxury 4×4 vehicles at a cost of about US$5 million when the company has a debt of US$6 billion.
“Now we see that finance minister Mr Musokotwane has sanctioned the purchase of 4 expensive cars for DEC (led by Mary Chirwa) 4 or five more for other government institutions when the economy is on its knees and steeped in debt this is wrong.”
Ambassador Mwamba said the “problem with Zambian SOE heads is they want to compete with private sector heads while ignoring the fact that private sector heads draw their perks from their performance so called KPIs or key performance indicators set by their board of directors.”
Mr Mwamba also urged President Hichilema to stop calling himself the Chief Marketing Officer or Zambia because in doing so, he gives up his position as CEO or Chief Executive of Zambia.
He said a CMO answers to the CEO so therefore his CEOs such as parastatal chiefs and Permanent Secretaries remain without a job when he takes over their ´low´ titles.
The diplomat turned politician who is also a member of the central committee of the main opposition Patriotic Front urged Mr Hichilema to halt the massive international trips tipping the scale at about two trips a month since assuming office 10 months ago because they rob the poor Zambians.
“President Hichilema is in trouble over foreign trips that are out of the roof because he condemned predecessor Edgar Lungu over trips, most of which were genuine. He must be held to the same high bar he set it is getting too expensive in a poor economy like ours,” said Mwamba.
A constant issue-based critic of President Hichilema, Ambassador Mwamba called on the Zambian President to educate himself on what being a President of a country is because he is doing a bad job currently, especially economically as prices of food and fuel continue to rise.
President Hichilema´s “useful idiots” praise singers as termed by Dr Fred Mmembe are however expected to refute these hard cold facts, as stated by Ambassador Mwamba and others.
The question here is whether Mr Hichilema has control of his cronies in UPND or not? They don’t seem to practice what he preaches according to observers.
The full interview is available on the 5 FM Facebook page:
[ Source : Zambianobserver.com]