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Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Corruption in Court, 3rd Edition

The ACC recently arrested an Assistant Local Court Clerk based at Kasama Local Court for corrupt practices. It is alleged He narrated that Brian Kabala on 14th August, 2013 solicited for K850 and actually received K500.00 from Mr. Daniel Chitete Mutambo as an inducement or reward for him to facilitate a favourable judgment for Mr. Mutambo in a matter that he (Mr. Mutambo) was sued for divorce by his wife. He was arrested following "a surveillance operation conducted by the Commission".

This is yet another case involving corruption in the courts. There are coming quite fast. It is good to see the ACC focusing in this area intensively - and actually doing some "surveillance" work.

Our court system is riddled with corruption at every tier. We need more of such arrests. Corruption in the judiciary must be top priority. A clean judicial system can help deter corrupt practices. A dirty and corrupt judiciary encourages even greater corruption. Corruption in institutions which are tasked with combating corruption is likely to encourage corruption in other areas, since the possibility of detection and punishment is reduced. Any fight against corruption must therefore begin with eradicating corruption in the judiciary.

Randomised targeting is one area we need to use more effectively in tackling corruption. A lot of corruption can be deterred by the ACC going undercover randomly in key institutions especially the police and courts. The tactics are available, the ACC just need lots of resources and good top management.

Chola Mukanga | Economist
Copyright © Zambian Economist 2013

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