Chikwanda Comes Out Fighting the Cartel

Finance Minister Alexander Chikwanda has come out fighting following sustained allegations of corruption involving tax refunds at the mines.

Chikwanda, who has dismissed the attacks as a part of a larger scheme to discredit him and his lieutenants in the other corner of the Patriotic Front contest, released a classified letter he wrote to President Michael Sata on July 15th in a bid to ward off his aersaries.

He also said some media houses had gone beyond journalism in scandalizing individuals they don’t like.

Chikwanda said while it was alright for The Post Newspaper (although he did not mention them by name) to support their preferred candidate there was no need for them to carry out their campaigns with slander and malice.

The controversy surrounds the leakage of a letter that alleges that Chikwanda had sought to protect the mines by facilitating a US$600 million Value Added Tax refund.

“This letter was a classified document therefore the law enforcement agencies whose duty it is to protect government confidentiality and integrity may wish to know how it got in the hands of unauthorized persons,” said Chikwanda.

“I wish to reiterate that VAT rule 18 affects all exporters and not just the mining sector as will be seen from the letter which is being declassified now, mining firms are not being insulated from their tax obligations.”

Chikwanda seems to be caught in a bitterly brewing succession battle in the ruling PF where the Wynter Kabimba camp in league with The Post Newspaper suspect him to be locking away the Bemba vote.

Source : Zambia Reports

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