When speaking as APNAC, you have no immunity – Mweetwa


When speaking as APNAC, you have no immunity – Mweetwa

By Kombe Chimpinde Mataka

UPND spokesperson Cornelius Mweetwa says Munir Zulu has no immunity from arrest.
He says it will be sad if the move by the Lumezi Independent member of parliament to make corruption allegations against
finance and infrastructure ministers Situmbeko Musokotwane and Charles Milupi respectively is a concocted political gimmick
which has gone sour.

Featuring on Prime TV’s Oxygen of Democracy on Monday evening, Mweetwa who is also Southern Province minister, said
Milupi and Dr Musokotwane’s case was beyond civil litigation.
“That I made various allegations about those that were occupying public office in respect to them having been connected to one of the
other act of alleged corruption and one of the guiding principles in my execution of duty was to ensure that I never make baseless or
political allegation because I knew as a lawyer that whenever you say someone… you are either amenable to libel or the law of defamation through which you are taken to a civil court for the court to judge if you did defame or in a libellous manner, you did injure the persona for someone for which the court if it is in the affirmative, you will

be punished. You will be made for instance to pay,” he said. “But if you have justification, then you are let scot free. That is how the law operates. But there is also what is called criminal defamation which tells that your allegations go beyond ordinary civil
status. You get to defame someone that way, you get to be arrested and tried through criminal justice arena. So the police have given their reasons for the arrest and for me I think that in a country of laws such a thing gives an opportunity for this matter to be
cleared. It gives honourable Munir Zulu chance if he has evidence to adduce it so that this matter can be put to rest. Otherwise, I feel
for the stress that honourable Musokotwane and Milupi were made to go through if the allegations were mere political rhetoric.”
Mweetwa said APNAC members did not enjoy any immunity.

“I can also clarify here that when you are speaking as APNAC, you have
no immunity that we enjoy at parliament because APNAC is an association of members of parliament pursuing the agenda to fight
corruption. To lead as role models, providing leadership for good national resource management particularly financial management in public affairs. This is an alumni of members of parliament across

the African continent. At global level it is called Global Association of Parliamentarians against Corruption. It does not enjoy any
immunity that we enjoy as members of parliament when speaking on the
floor of the House. Additionally, even with that immunity at parliament where we enjoy that immunity and privilege, you cannot
state something which is not factual on the floor of the House,” he said. “The beauty with this situation is that every citizen is presumed
innocent until proven guilty. So we await to see what processes are going to ensue out of this kind of an arrest but as former president of APNAC, I feel very sad if at all those

statements were made either for political reasons because he was sitted next to my own friend honourable (Mulenga) Fube, MP for Chilubi (Island) and he seems urging him to say what he was saying. That is why he gave him company at that briefing. Clearly, showing that this was a PF political enterprise. So it is going to be very unfortunate if that was a concocted political gimmick which has gone sour.”
He said APNAC was an association that all members of parliament have
ascribed regardless of their political affiliation.

“We hope for the best that this matter would be concluded in the manner that all citizens are supposed to be satisfied because I know the President [Hakainde Hichilema] who leads us abhors and frowns upon corruption,” said Mweetwa.
Last week, Zulu alleged that Milupi and Dr Musokotwane were secretly being investigated by the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) for receiving bribes via bank transfers, among to “US $250,000 each from a named firm”.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here