PAC orders punitive action against immigration officers

MMD Chipangali Member of Parliament (MP) Vincent Mwale
Minister of Sports,Vincent Mwale

THE Public Accounts Committee (PAC) on Thursday ordered Ministry of Home Affairs permanent secretary Brigadier-General Bridget Chola to institute punitive action against officers at the Department of Immigration headquarters who failed to deposit K553 million into a Government account for over three months.
The funds were raised from revenue collected from issuance of visas and work permits but were not deposited into a Government account for over three months.
This came to light when Gen Chola and officials from her Ministry appeared before the committee to answer audit queries cited in the 2012 Auditor General’s report.
The committee, which is chaired by Chipangali member of Parliament (MP) Vincent Mwale (MMD), noted that failure to deposit the funds is tantamount to corruption.
Mr Mwale wondered why Gen Chola did not take punitive action against the erring officers to deter others.
“Madam, we are very disappointed with you because after noticing this problem you did not take action against these officers. Why should officers be allowed to keep money for over three months without banking it?
“We want action to be taken against these officers so that others who have been entrusted with the responsibility of taking care of public funds do not repeat,” Mr Mwale said.
Mafinga MP Catherine Namugala (MMD) also wondered why some officers at the Department of Immigration headquarters failed to bank the revenue collected from the issuance of visas and work permits when there are enough banks in Lusaka.
“What happened should not be tolerated because this is the same money which the Government is using to develop the nation. It is disappointing that the explanation coming from the controlling officer shows clearly that there is a system failure in the ministry.
“This also shows that the officers are conniving and are sharing the revenue collections and yet no action is being taken against them,” Ms Namugala said.
Lubansenshi MP Patrick Mucheleka (Independent) was also disappointed that the ministry, which is supposed to be at the centre of the fight against corruption, is tolerating the vice.
“I am very disappointed with this ministry because it is supposed to take care of Government property. What we have seen is total disregard of the law and the officers who were involved in delayed banking of the revenue collected should be made accountable for their actions,” Mr Mucheleka said.
Chama North MP January Zimba (PF) also wondered why K1.3 million meant for the purchase of marine equipment for the Zambia Police Service was misapplied.
Mr Zimba said it is illogical that the money meant for the improvement of operations for the Zambia Police Service was spent on unrelated activities.
He also said he is disappointed to learn that over 200 government receipts went missing at the Department of Immigration without the controlling officer putting in place measures to recover the documents.
Gen Chola assured that she will come up with stringent measures to ensure prudent utilisation of public funds.
She also assured that she will take action against officers flouting financial regulations in the ministry.

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  1. El argumento de ZETA contra la criminalización de la zoofilia en Alemania es muy contundente.