Eliminating Political Opponents Through The Illusion Of Truth, The Case Of Dr. Chitalu Chilufya!

…as a report by a Parliamentary Committee confirms that the “Honeybee Scandal” was a hoax.

By Mpandashalo Mwewa.

Lusaka – 26th June, 2022.

A report by the Parliamentary Committee on health, community development and social services for the First Session of the Thirteenth National Assembly led by the UPND Member of Parliament for Lukulu East Constituency, Hon. Dr. Christopher Kalila, has stated that Government did not procure defective medical supplies.

The Committee toured selected pharmaceutical manufacturing companies and public health institutions in Lusaka, Central and Copperbelt Provinces in order to appreciate the challenges that the players in the industry were facing, as well as the quality and availability of medical supplies in public health institutions.

Arising from the tour and subsequent stakeholder meetings, the findings of the Committee, according to the report, indicate that:

“On the quality of medicine and medical supplies received, the stakeholders in the public health facilities visited informed the Committee that the medicine and medical supplies received were safe as the World Health Organisation and the Zambia Medicine Regulatory Authority had certified them fit for public consumption, save for the cotton wool received at Ndola Central Hospital, which was under quarantine.”

This is in stark contrast to unverified reports which were circulated by propaganda tabloids stating that the Ministry of Health had procured from Honeybee Pharmacy expired drugs, defective gloves and leaking condoms worth US$17m as the Committee reiterates that all the procured drugs and medical supplies were tested and certified to be safe.

Also Read: Zambia’s pharmacovigilance cannot permit procurement of expired drugs. Link: http://bit.ly/3HV3b6w

“Repeat a lie often enough and it becomes the truth”, is a law of propaganda. Among psychologists this is known as the “illusion of truth” effect. There was nothing truthful about this story and this write-up seeks to set records right.

The Honeybee scandal started with false allegations that Honeybee Pharmacy Limited (Honeybee) was paid USD$17,000,000. However, the contract was awarded based on good faith and trust because government, through the Ministry of Health (MoH), had no money. Honeybee took the financial burden for all the medical kits supplied to the Zambian government. It supplied 5,000 medical kits at a net worth of USD$3,990,700.

The MoH did not award such a contract to only Honeybee, it had awarded various contracts relating to the supply of health kits within the same emergency supply contract involving two other suppliers which were, Pharmanova and Artemis. These two entities failed to supply without upfront payment leading to the MOH later cancelling the two contracts.

Pharmanova’s contract was worth USD$3,554,100 and Artemis was valued at USD$14,139,450. Honeybee’s priority was the health and safety of their fellow Zambian citizens and provided the medical kits, yet, they were defamed and slandered in the media. Oddly enough, the Auditor General’s report did not mention the contracts awarded to the other two entities who had not supplied any medical kits.

It is evident that the omission was part of the scheme to mislead the nation into believing that Honeybee was single-sourced in a falsified $17m transaction that never happened, with Honeybee being used as a pony in a politically motivated arsenal directed at the former Minister of Health, Dr. Chitalu Chilufya, by his rivals within and outside the government.

Also Read: Honeybee Pharmacy Ltd’s response to malicious media and PAC allegations sponsored by business competitors. Link: http://bit.ly/2MOG7xV

This case could help President Hichilema clean up the compromised, and now, completely rotten backbone of the Law Enforcement Agencies. The nation now knows that the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) was manipulated in Dr. Chitalu Chilufya’s case! And whoever manipulated the former ACC acting Director General, Rosemary Kuzwayo, to have Dr. Chitalu Chilufya tried in the court of public opinion, must have been powerful enough to have touched other oversight institutions in the similar manner.

Consequently, the Office of the Auditor General (OAG) and the Zambia Bureau of Standards (ZABS) must be thoroughly investigated especially that in the recent past, they have made sensational headlines on falsified reports.

Just why would the News Diggers back unsubstantiated reports by ZABS and Zambia Medicines Regulations Agency (ZAMRA) when its mandate should compel it to question how ZABS tested supposedly defective products without testing equipment, so as to provide the public with verifiable objective content as per our journalism standards?

Also Read: Honeybee Scandal deepens as two ZABS employees who were forced to fake lab results resign. Link: http://bit.ly/2LeFjlH

As for ZABS, just what laboratory did it use in the Honeybee scandal, if any? I had earlier reported that Adeshwnar Meditex PVT. Ltd, one of the suppliers of Honeybee’s contents of the medical kits, questioned the veracity of ZAMRA’s statements on the tests conducted by ZABS.

“With respect to the subject mentioned, we are not in agreement with the allegations put by ZAMRA on the supplied Latex Examination Gloves, and we do not accept the two Test Reports issued by ZABS. In fact, we seriously doubt if Sampling Standards & Inspection protocols provided under ISO 11193:2008, have been followed at the time of conducting the Tests by ZABS. Our company is GMP, CE S& IS0 13485-2016 Certified, with Exports to more than 40 countries and an In House State of Art Laboratory. Our goods have to pass through the entire test Parameters mentioned under ISO 11193:2008 protocol before leaving our factory premises,” read Adeshwnar Meditex Pvt. Ltd. statement that has was availed to me when I was Eagle One – Zambia Editor In Chief.

There’s enough proof that politicians lack political will to outrightly curb the scourge or my investigation on the Honeybee scandal would have reached someone’s table. With a clearly defined unbiased political policy on the eradication of corruption, civil servants would be scared to engage in corruption activities.

The evidence on the table clearly shows that the “Honeybee Scandal” was a hoax that was aimed at:

  1. Fixing Dr. Chitalu Chilufya who was widely seen as a potential replacement for the former Republican President Edgar Lungu owing to his efficient and effective handling of the pandemic. Of all the PF infights that we witnessed, this was the largest battle.
  2. Discredit Honeybee Pharmacy thereby forcing the then Patriotic Front led government into canceling Honeybee’s contract with hopes of having the cancelled tender awarded to the pharmaceutical Cartel in Zambia.

Also Watch: Dr. Habasonda on Zambia’s former Health Minister, Dr. Chitalu Chilufya’s arrest. Link: http://fb.watch/dT99IxN9op/

But probably of great interest is reflecting on who has benefitted from fighting Dr. Chitalu Chilufya, extinguishing his political career by those who could not face him at the table of finding solutions to our various socio economic development challenges.

Now that the dust has settled, it’s time for Zambia to shift its attention to Dr. Chitalu Chilufya’s achievements in the health sector, the missing leadership that has now plunged the sector in a national health crisis. Politics should not be a self preservation tool but a vehicle for development.

Also Read: The Health Sector in Zambia will never be the same because of Dr. Chitalu Chilufya. He played a significant transformative role to the successes scored in the sector. Link: http://bit.ly/3QKAU6S

Source: Woodpecker’s Digest.

©2022 Eagle One Zambia, Inc.
Journalism for social change


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