|'Nevers had no power to source Gold money'|
by YANDE SYAMPEYO and DEAN MWAANGA, Zambia Daily Mail
December 23rd, 2011
MINISTER of Foreign Affairs Chishimba Kambwili says former High
Commissioner to Canada Nevers Mumba had no authority to collect over
K500 million from Barrick Gold on behalf of the government. Mr Kambwili
has since ordered that the account the Barrick Gold money was held in
Dr Mumba is believed to have solicited and received
more than half a billion Kwacha (US$122,000) from Barrick Gold,
purporting to fund a Zambian cultural week in his capacity as high
commissioner to Canada.
The largest gold digger in the world has
confirmed in an emailed statement that they gave money to the Zambian
mission in Canada for some “cultural” events.
The Auditor- General will audit the books of accounts of the Zambian mission in Canada again.
Mail investigations have revealed that the charismatic preacher could
have used the money given to the embassy for purposes other than what
the money was meant for.
Mr Kambwili said the money Dr Mumba collected is for the treasury as he solicited for the funds using the name of Government.
He wants Dr Mumba to disclose who authorised him to collect the money from Barrick Gold on behalf of the Zambian government.
Mumba was a signatory to that money and in fact he even used headed
paper to solicit for those monies, so the money belongs to Government
and as far as we are concerned, he had no authority to collect it on
behalf of Government. Let him tell us who authorised him to collect that
money,” he said.
Mr Kambwili said it is a serious offence for a
serving diplomat to solicit for money in countries they are accredited
to without approval from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
High Commissioners and ambassadors act for and on behalf of the minister
of foreign affairs who acts on behalf of the president.
“If he was
soliciting for funds for private organisations or Zambian residents in
Canada, he should not have done it on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
headed paper,” said Mr Kambwili.
The minister said the money collected by Dr Mumba belongs to the treasury as he solicited the funds using government property.
“Any case which involves impropriety, we will investigate as
Government, to the bitter end. We need to stamp out corruption and
financial irregularities in the system of governance,” he said.
Mr Kambwili advised Dr Mumba to ‘tone down’ and await the outcome of the investigation.
He said Dr Mumba will not do himself any good by accusing Government of trying to fish for cases against him.
Mr Kambwili said the Patriotic Front (PF) Government is not interested in persecuting Dr Mumba but is merely following the law.
On Tuesday, Dr Mumba admitted knowledge of the money but denied any sinister action, saying everything was done above board.
“I am aware about the money from Barrick Gold but it went to the hosting of Amayenge by the Zambian Canada Cultural Exchange,” Dr. Mumba said without elaborating further.