$600,000 for immigration permits vanishes

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ABOUT US$600,000 (K6,379,590) from various immigration permits at Immigration Department offices at Kenneth Kaunda International Airport (KKIA) has gone missing.

This came to light yesterday when Minister of Home Affairs Davies Mwila toured the Immigration offices in Lusaka.
According to the officer in charge at Immigration office at KKIA, Pelekelo Lungu, who was briefing Mr Mwila yesterday, an internal audit revealed that the money went missing between March and October 2014.
Mr Mwila, speaking during the tour, directed immigration officers to promptly bank monies they collect.
“The officer collected money in 2014 but failed to deposit the money in the bank. I have given a directive to the permanent secretary to take disciplinary action against this officer and an effective audit is going to be conducted to find out the misappropriation of the collected revenue,” he said.
Mr Mwila said the officer will not only be disciplined, but prosecuted, too, when investigations are concluded.
And the minister directed the Immigration Department to stop the influx of immigrants who are working without work permits.
Mr Mwila said it is unacceptable for companies to bring in foreigners with readily available skills such as plumbing or bricklaying.
“How can you approve permits for people with such qualifications? How do you give a work permit to someone who comes to work at a massage parlour?
“My office has information that most foreigners are getting spouse permits and when they stay in Zambia for years, they are leaving without their local wives,” Mr Mwila said.
He directed Immigration Department director general Moola Milomo to work effectively in ensuring that the department fulfils its mandate.

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