5 December 2012

Zambia: Guzzling Councillor Costs LCC K10 Million

THE Lusaka City Council (LCC) has been ordered to refund the K10 million incurred by Patriotic Front councillor, Chikutalo Nkhoma during official duty in Ethiopia, Foreign Affairs Minister Given Lubinda has told Parliament.

The LCC is expected to settle the bill to the Addis Ababa Local Authority.

In addition, the LCC has set up an ad hoc disciplinary committee to analyse Mr Nkhoma's case.

He is a councillor in Silwiza Ward in Northmead.

Mr Nkhoma is alleged to have accumulated an equivalent of K10 million on alcoholic beverages at Sheraton Hotel in a space of five days.

Mr Lubinda said this in a ministerial statement on the behaviour of Mr Nkhoma following a point of order on the matter of a bill accumulated in Addis Ababa.

"On November 26 when the mission was informed, the accountant at the Zambian Embassy informed the town clerk and the mayor of the City of Lusaka of what had transpired with their official and asked for direction.

"This incident has caused huge embarrassment to the Zambian Government and also tarnished the image of Zambians living in Ethiopia. My appeal to my fellow countrymen and women travelling abroad is that they ought to conduct themselves honourably," Mr Lubinda said.

Mr Lubinda said the Government had formally apologised to the Ethiopian Government and Sheraton Hotel management through the country's mission in Addis Ababa.

He said he had requested the councillor to provide a full report immediately after receiving information about the incident.

Mr Nkhoma was part of a three-man delegation invited by an Addis Ababa authority to attend the commemoration of the 125th anniversary of the existence of the Ethiopian local authority.

"Despite the fact that the Addis Ababa Local Authority extended courtesies by paying for accommodation and meals for the Zambian delegation, Mr Nkhoma exceeded the given ceiling by US$2,000," the minister said.

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