Socialist Party General Secretary Cosmas Musumali has observed that corruption in Zambia is a problem that has gone beyond individuals.
In a video recording, Dr Musumali said under a capitalism system, the problem could not be solved.
Below is a full transcription of the recording
“Corruption is indeed very endemic in Zambian society, but we are not doing justice to it by merely trying to limit it to individuals; talking about: ‘this one is a non-corrupt individual, the other one is more corrupt’. I think we have to look at the entire system. If you look at the system of capitalism and look at its basic values, and those basic values are individualism, greed, and aspects of unbridled competition and consumerism. Those values are more prone towards ensuring that our society remains corrupt. You cannot handle corruption effectively under this system.
What we are trying to do on an everyday basis is to look at what is called the high level corruption. It is justified because it’s more visible and its impact is very, very serious for our society. But at the same time we should acknowledge that if the top leadership is corrupt there’s a great possibility that even the masses of our people are also corrupt. So, we live in a society that is corrupt from the top to bottom. And if we want to fight corruption, yes we can deal on the issue of policies, we can look at the issue of the strategies, we can look n the issue of changing the laws – providing certain incentives, providing education to the masses, but that in itself doesn’t help very much. What would help is to bring in new values in our politics, in the economy, basically in the entire society; and that’s where socialism comes in.
Socialism is based on the fundamental values of equity; it’s based on honesty, humility and solidarity. These are values that take away the aspect of corruption. A socialist society is not a corrupt society, a capitalist society is a highly corrupt society; it’s just in its DNA. And if Zambians want to fight corruption there are no options under capitalism for doing it. The only option that is there is to ensure that come 2021 the Socialist Party takes over power. The masses of the people of Zambia take over power; that’s the solution to corruption.”
And expressing concern on pettiness from government leaders, Dr Musumali said in another video recording that:
“The critical question being posed regularly is that, ‘why are Zambians unhappy? Why are Zambians annoyed?’ Zambians are generally hungry today, more than ever before in the history of this country. And the quick explanation is that the high levels of injustice, the high levels of iniquity, and the apparent lack of peace in our country today is a critical issue. It’s a driving force behind the anger and the frustration of our masses with the Zambian politics. The danger in this is that the masses are becoming cynical; they don’t believe the leadership anymore. The leadership in Zambia doesn’t have the message for the masses, because it doesn’t have the message it hides the class nature, the class conflict that’s so prevalent today in Zambian society. And this leadership, because it lacks the content, it lacks the substantive issues that it should bring to the masses; it’s resorting to agendas that are very, very narrow. One agenda that we hear of is often about ethnicity. The issue of tribalism is political; it is being caused by politicians that don’t have a proper agenda for this country. The issue of religion, to some cases aspects of Satanism, keeps on resurfacing. The issue of who is Zambian and who is not Zambian keeps on coming up all the time whenever a leader emerges. And we have issues of race that have been thrown out there; these issues are very divisive. And of late we hear of issues of sexual orientation. You know, Zambians are very sensitive to these issues. They are raised in order to cover up the lack of content, the lack of a political will on behalf of the masses. And people are becoming literally very annoyed with their politicians. So if Zambians get frustrated sooner or later their participation in our politics is going to whither, just because we are not carrying the appropriate message to the masses. And, can the politics change? The answer is an absolute ‘No’. The system of petty bourgeois capitalism that we have today in Zambia is designed in such a way that they can’t tell the truth. They can’t talk of this system being exploitative; they can’t talk of this system lacking injustice. And this system can only be maintained on the basis of state-sponsored violence; there’s no other way around it. And that’s the message that they can’t openly tell the masses. And to hide that fact they go to very divisive issues, they go to petty issues that at the end of the day preoccupy the media. And we are not doing justice to our masses.”