By OSCAR MALIPENGA
I BEGAN to be disillusioned when late president Michael Sata started to lose grip of the State machinery and it became even more compromised when his health started failing him, Rainbow party leader Wynter Kabimba has confessed.
And Mr Kabimba has attacked Members of Parliament (MPs) for allegedly abusing the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) in a corrupt manner.
Mr Kabimba, who was Patriotic Front (PF) secretary general under President Sata until he was fired in Augusr 2014, said after one year of being in Government, Mr Sata ‘‘started getting derailed from the track by personal favours’’.
Speaking when he featured on Hot FM radio programme dubbed the “The Hot Seat”, Mr Kabimba said president Sata’s intentions were good but that progressively he started losing focus.
“I worked with Michael Sata and I want to tell this today: Michael’s intentions were very good but for me who worked with him closely I was seeing that, progressively, he was getting derailed from the track by some of the things that I have said here – personal favours.
“I asked him one day, one year after we had been in power, why Willie Nsanda should be the chairman of the board of the Road Development Agency (RDA) when there was no board, there is just a chairman,” Mr Kabimba said.
He said there was no board at the Road Development Agency but there was a
board chairman. “…and one year you as a president you are finding difficult to put a board in place and Willie Nsanda is just chortling alone around Chinese and all these other people that are looking for contracts,” he said.
Mr Kabimba was responding to a caller only identified as Shakespeare who asked him (Kabimba) to rate the performance of all previous heads of State.
Meanwhile, Mr Kabimba said Members of Parliament (MPs) were fond of abusing the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) so much in a corrupt manner.
He said even the Farmer Input Support Programme had been a ‘‘bedrock of corruption’’ from the beginning. “It is a corrupt system that has benefited the politicians and that is why they cannot do away with it.
“It is like the Constitutional Development Fund, the only time when you hear the Members of Parliament in Parliament speaking in unison is during the Budget when they are all clamouring to increase CDF which they abuse so much in a corrupt manner,” Mr Kabimba said.
He said it was the only time when the ruling party and the opposition would speak with one voice because everyone was a beneficiary of CDF.
Mr Kabimba said both FISP and CDF were a disaster and that the Rainbow Party would do away with them. He said the Rainbow Party manifesto was very clear that CDF would be abolished and would redesign FISP to make the farmers graduate so that a peasant farmer was not a peasant farmer from birth until death.
Mr Kabimba said even during president Sata’s era nothing much had been done about FISP because it was ‘‘business as usual’’.
Mr Kabimba also challenged President Edgar Lungu to immediately act by dismissing Cabinet ministers and Government officials whom he publicly said were corrupt.
“If you have a minister and a group of officials that are going to cause starvation to the people that elected you, if you are having ministers and officials that are going to impoverish the people that elected you, surely don’t you owe those people a duty by making sure that this crop of ministers and officials is out of the way.
‘‘President Lungu should show us his actions that he was not happy with late distribution of fertilizer and that he was in charge,’’ Mr Kabimba said.