Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) director Martha Chizuma says the graft-busting body will strive to guard against being used as a political tool to silence political opponents to avoid losing its integrity and public confidence.
The ACB chief said this in reaction to a thought-provoking keynote address by Malawi University of Science and Technology (Must) vice-chancellor Professor Adress Malata at a public lecture under the theme Understanding the Role of Umunthu in Dealing with Corruption in Malawi held at Sunbird Mount Soche last night monitored on Times Radio.
Chizuma said ACB should be smarter to curb corruption because it is sophisticated.
“The concept of umunthu resonates very well with our religious beliefs because people that commit corrupt acts are in the churches and there is a big disconnect between what we say and what we do,” she said.
Chizuma added that the bureau is working with the Malawi Institute of Education to have anti-corruption messages incorporated in the primary school curriculum.
In her address, Malata argued that integrating the concept of umunthu is critical in addressing corruption in the country. In this regard, she asked Malawians to embrace the concept as part of their lives if corruption is to end.
She said every Malawian should inculcate the doctrine of not
taking what does not belong to them, adding that corruption in the country is more evil than hunger and disease mentioned in the national anthem because it aggravates the two.
“In our paper, we are arguing that umunthu should be a moral brand in the country and encouraging the idea of not taking what is not yours,” said Malata.
In the lecture, Malata recommended that all education institutions should mainstream the concept of umunthu and ethics in their curriculum. She said Must has already undertaken the initiative.
“Corruption mostly happens in the shadows and has ready enablers that allow it to happen,” she said.
In her presentation, Malata further argued that umunthu is a moral
capital much needed in the country and ending corruption is the responsibility of all Malawians.
The public lecture was organised by ACB and attracted other notable experts such as Professor Jonathan Makuwira of Must, Professor James Kamwachale Khomba of Malawi University of Business and Applied Sciences, expert in ethics Francis Masiye and culture expert Robert Chanunkha, among others.