German ambassador in Zambia returns Christmas gifts from company
Lusaka, Zambia – The German ambassador to Zambia, Dr. Anne Wagner-Mitchell, has returned Christmas gifts from a local company, citing ethical reasons.
In a letter to the company’s CEO, Dr. Wagner-Mitchell said that she was unable to accept the gifts, which included electronic gadgets such as a power bank, a flash drive, and a thermos flask with a digital temperature display.
The ambassador explained that, as a German civil servant and public official, she is prohibited from accepting gifts that could be seen as an attempt to influence her or compromise her impartiality.
“I am compelled by law to avoid even the appearance of gaining any personal advantage or benefits that may arise from my formal duties or to be susceptible to any influence from an external source,” she wrote.
Dr. Wagner-Mitchell said that she was returning the gift box to the company and requested that they not send her any gifts in the future.
“I am sure the money spent on these gifts would be highly appreciated as a donation to a charitable organization caring for the most vulnerable and poor of Zambia’s society,” she added.
The company has not yet responded to the ambassador’s letter.
Dr. Wagner-Mitchell’s decision to return the gifts has been praised by some Zambians, who have commended her for her commitment to ethics and transparency.
Others have said that the company should have been more aware of the ethical considerations involved in giving gifts to government officials.
The incident has sparked a debate in Zambia about the importance of ethics in public life.
Some Zambians have called for stricter laws and regulations to prevent government officials from accepting gifts from businesses.
Others have said that it is up to individuals to uphold ethical standards and avoid conflicts of interest.
The German embassy in Lusaka has not commented on the incident.
It is not clear whether the company will make a donation to a charitable organization, as suggested by Dr. Wagner-Mitchell.
The incident is a reminder of the importance of ethics in public life. It is also a reminder that businesses need to be aware of the cultural and legal sensitivities involved in giving gifts to government officials in other countries.
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