Chirwa does not report to the board, ZR at politicians’ mercy – Prof. Saasa

The war of words continues as accusations and counter accusations continues at the embattled Zambia Railways with the board now saying running of the board is at the mercy of politicians.

And Chairman of the dissolved Zambia Railways Board Mark Chona has said: “The most dangerous thing about old Men is that they have no future to fear.”

The board that is said to have been dissolved last Thursday but the announcement was only made today by Transport Minister Christopher Yaluma held a press briefing in Lusaka Sunday afternoon, April 21, 2013 despite the Minister saying it had no blessings of government.

At the briefing Deputy Chairman of the board Prof. Oliver Saasa explained that it had been difficult to work with Managing Director Clive Chirwa. He said Prof. Chirwa was not accountable to the board.

“Clive Chirwa is answering to somebody else and not the board,” Prof. Saasa revealed. “Whoever will takeover from us as board members won’t work with Clive Chirwa successfully because he doesn’t answer to the board but somebody else.”

He also retaliated the high financial demands Prof. Chirwa was demanding from Zambia Railways. He said Chirwa had demanded to be drawing a monthly salary of K249 and refused that at no point did the board ask for K500 Million as sitting allowance as claimed by Prof Chirwa.

Prof Saasa also claimed that at some point Prof. Chirwa told the Board that they were operating at different levels of intellectual with him. He said the board now believes the K72million being spent on the rentals for Clive Chirwa’s house was not really being spent on rentals.

He explained that the board did not oppose Prof. Chirwa’s plans but merely advised that as agreed with the government feasibility study is important as it is the perfect road map.

Chona said his board was inviting law enforcement agencies to deal with rife corruption at Zambia Railways.

The government has said the press briefing didn’t have its blessings as it is dissolved. Yaluma said a new board will be constituted.