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Vol 52 No 19

Published 23rd September 2011


Zambia

Too little, too late

The President’s promise to fight corruption after the elections seems to have convinced neither diplomats nor voters

While publicly condemning corruption, President Rupiah Bwezani Banda gave United States diplomats various explanations of why he could do little about it, according to US State Department cables that WikiLeaks released this month – just before Zambia’s legislative and presidential elections on 20 September. An unnamed World Bank vice-president challenged Banda in person about his reputation for being ‘soft on corruption’ when they met at the United Nations General Assembly in New York, according to one October 2009 cable. Banda replied that he could not take a robust anti-corruption stance because he had ‘multiple constituencies to satisfy’.

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