Rescind K5bn NCC payment, CCZ urges Kunda
| NCC Delegates|
COUNCIL of Churches in Zambia (CCZ)
yesterday appealed to Vice-President George Kunda to rescind his “bad proposal”
to pay about K5 billion—(or
the equivalent of more than US$1 million)—to ministers and other
Lusaka-based parliamentarians attending the NCC.
And All People’s
Congress (APC) president Ken Ngondo observed that the National
Constitutional Conference (NCC) is a money-spinner for Vice-President Kunda,
ministers and other delegates.
Commenting on The Post's exposé
that Vice-President & Justice minister Kunda last month recommended to
Cabinet to pay about K5 billion to ministers, deputy ministers and four ordinary
parliamentarians attending the NCC as facilitation allowance, CCZ general
secretary Reverend Suzanne Matale said the decision showed disrespect and lack
of good judgment on the part of Vice-President Kunda.
“We can only appeal
to the Vice-President to rescind this bad proposal as it only serves to upset
the many Zambians who are also deserving for their contributions to the nation,”
Rev Matale said.
Rev Matale said there were many Zambians that retired
from serving the nation diligently in various capacities in government that had
not yet been paid their meagre pensions while others had even died due to
And Ngondo demanded that President Rupiah
Banda gives his position on Vice-President Kunda's demands and his failure to
circulate the Cabinet memorandum to his Cabinet colleagues.
“I can assure
you that if there will be change of government, things will be bad, I think
these people will have to pay back like the British parliamentarians where they
are being asked to pay back public funds. They will have to pay back public
funds and they will be declared bankrupt.
I am sure the late president
Levy Patrick Mwanawasa would not have accepted what is going on now,” Ngondo
said. “George Kunda has been very arrogant. What are they doing about it as
Cabinet? Was the President aware? If he is aware, what are his comments on it?
His Cabinet colleagues who were not shown the Cabinet memorandum what are they
saying? Are they just going to allow this thing to go by? That is why I am
saying we should take a long term view; this money must be paid back at a later
He said Vice-President Kunda's demand for payment of K5 billion
to ministers and other Lusaka-based parliamentarians was plunder of national
“They can get away now when they have this term of office but
if they lose the next year, these issues must be revised. This is an open
plunder of our resources. To some of us, the NCC, we were prepared that it
should be a voluntary commitment where people should not be paid for making the
constitution. But it's a money spinner.
If it K5 billion will be
implemented, then government should also pay the UNIP retirees their money,”
Ngondo said. “It NCC has become a money-making venture. They want to make enough
money for themselves before the end of their term of office. It has become
employment but this is plunder of our resources.”
Ngondo wondered why
Vice-President Kunda wanted to be paid more money as NCC delegate when many
people that worked in the UNIP government were poor and had not been paid their
Meanwhile, Patriotic Front (PF) president Michael
Sata called for investigations into the expenditures of the NCC.
security wings must storm NCC and investigate it the way they are investigating
Inspector General of Police Francis Kabonde. The NCC has even paid the price of
two computers for one computer,” Sata alleged.
Sata wondered why members
of parliament for Nchelenge and Chasefu, Benjamin Mwila and Chifumu Banda
respectively, were being paid as Lusaka-based parliamentarians when in fact
their constituencies were in rural areas.
Federation of Free Trade Unions
in Zambia (FFTUZ) president Joyce Simukoko said workers would not accept a poor
package at the conclusion of salary negotiations following Vice-President
Kunda's recommendation to Cabinet to pay K5 billion allowances for Lusaka-based
Simukoko said FFTUZ and its affiliates would consider
the recommendation as theft.
“You see Zambia has a lot of money when
looking at the Auditor General's reports that reveals how public funds are
misappropriated and misapplied. So government can't claim there is no money
because money is found for very few people and to the majority it is not
available hence workers will not accept a poor package of conditions of
service,” Simukoko said. “And to those negotiating for workers, they should use
this Vice-President Kunda's recommendation as a basis to ask for better
conditions and if this K5 billion is paid out then it is theft and at an
appropriate time those involved will be taken to court.”
Roan PF member
of parliament Chishimba Kambwili challenged public service unions to negotiate
for more packages considering that government had money to back date payments to
selected participants at the NCC.
Kambwili said public service workers'
unions should capitalise on the evil intentions of Vice-President
“We shall arrest George Kunda for fraudulent activities and
whoever gets it will be asked to pay back and I challenge the unions to
capitalise on this issue and ask for more money because it is now clear that
there is money in government and how can somebody be paid over K100 million when
teachers are getting peanuts?” asked Kambwili.
According to a Cabinet
memorandum dated January 2010, Vice-President Kunda recommended that Cabinet
approve payment of utility/facilitation allowance to Lusaka-based members of
parliament at the rate of K650,000 per day backdated to December 19, 2007 when
the NCC started its sittings.