He initially brushed off a question by Senator Keresencia Chabuka about the diamonds saying: “With the risk of being dishonourable, I was going to say the question is frivolous. However, through you Madam President, the question of $15 billion which has been raised by the Hon. Senator, if people make statements in jests and they are taken seriously, I do not think we will be right to give way to something which is not substantiated.
“If ever there is anyone who stole $15 billion and there is someone out there who may have evidence to that effect, that can be brought before the police and the police will investigate and arrest, not arrest and investigate.”
When told by another Senator Lillian Timveos that Madiro could not brush off the case since Parliament had even set up a committee to look into the matter, Madiro said: “when allegations are made, where crimes are suspected to have been committed or are being committed, the police will investigate because that is their mandate which is provided for in the Constitution.
“It is only where the police are satisfied that there is reasonable suspicion that the crime have been committed that arrest are done. So, statements have been made and so far there is no evidence about the stolen US$15bn, so there are no arrests.”
Chabuka said this was not a joke because the country needed that $15 billion because it had no money.
Senate President Mabel Chinomona said what the Senator wanted to know was whether there were any investigations going on.
“Madam President, investigations are done when someone comes forward to give evidence or report that a crime has been committed,” Madiro responded.
“If statements are made, maybe at political rallies for political purposes – then that is a different matter altogether because theft of such an amount of money is a serious matter. We encourage those who have got evidence to come forward rather than rely on statements made at political fora.”