COBUSU president Njikho Musuku is dismayed that over K8 million budget for students is reportedly misapplied.
BELOW IS THE STATEMENT
PRESS STATEMENT FOR IMMEDIATE PRESS RELEASE
15 TH November, 2017.
MISUSE OF PUBLIC FUNDS A SERIOUS THREAT TO NATION DEVELOPMENT
The student’s leadership from the Copperbelt University COBUSU is deeply saddened with exacerbating misapplication of public funds which are solely meant to support poor Zambians wallowing in abject poverty. The recent published Auditor General’s report speaks volume to ordinary Zambians of what is taking place in these higher public offices. The Auditor Generals Report revealed more plunder of public resources.
The report for the year 2016 indicates that misapplication of funds has increased from about K28 million in 2015 to over K162 million in 2016.
We are very nonplussed with the report generally that came from the Ministry Of Higher Education which has revealed about K 8, 369 665 colossal monies were embezzled and misapplied. Our Public universities and colleges are in a dilapilated state where labs are no longer functional, no furniture in classes and teaching aids and poor sanitation.
Furthermore, construction of student hostels has been slow due to lack of funding and yet individuals keep misusing funds meant for the development of this nation.
In 2016, over 500 CBU students did not receive their project allowances and no reason was given as to why that happened. In addition, up to this time we still have over 550 unregistered first year CBU students who have not been given bursary hoping a listening government will positively respond to them. Over months now, the ministry which is fully aware of this has been silent after asking students to appeal for consideration. It is inhuman to keep students in uncertainty as they do not know their fate.
This kind of recklessness must be condemned by all well-meaning Zambians and it should be credited with maximum denigration it deserves from the general public. Such levels of rapacity and venality should not be left unchecked.
Zambian people should rise to the occasion and hold selfish leaders who are up to plunder and are deeply inclined in dubious and corrupt acts of obtaining public funds accountable and answerable for their sins. We demand that the law visits them. It is high time we spoke against such financial irregularities taking place in these offices; more especially in times where these same public office barriers come out in public to make false claims that government do not have sufficient resources to run the affairs of the nation whilst they are handsomely funded.
This has been the case with the Ministry of Higher Education were monies have never been enough to sponsor vulnerable students and crediting their meal and book allowances when it’s due, fund the universities and colleges for normal operations but conspicuous misappropriations of funds are taking center of its operations.
We urge Anti-Corruption Commission to with immediate effect institute investigations and thoroughly probe the ministry of Higher Education for misapplication of public funds and the possible embezzlements of public resources. We would also want to lodge in our humble appeal as students that His Excellency President Edgar Changwa Lungu should not let all those individuals with issues to sort and cleanse themselves with investigative agencies as they continue holding on to their respective ministerial positions as this will enhance transparency and equal application of law without interference.
In conclusion, we want to caution individuals behind this evil act to stop before time catches up with them. Public funds should be used for their intended purpose, especially the Education sector. If the people been trained do not get quality services, we do not expect the nation to develop.
We further ask the ministry to attend to the first year students in due time.
As COBUSU, we will always be at the core-center of facilitating dialogue with government as this is the only possible mean of settling issues affecting our fellow students in various institutions of higher learning.
Issued by; NJIKHO MUSUKU – COBUSU PRESIDENT