Zambia in distress – HH

THE country is in distress now, shatalamonako abena Zambia ukucula ifi tulecula nomba under PF, says Hakainde Hichilema.

Featuring on Copperbelt’s Iwave Radio yesterday, the UPND president said the assertion that the country had no money was not true.

Hichilema said given a chance to form government, the UPND would run a policy of zero tolerance to corruption and prosecute perpetrators of the vice.

The UPND leader, who mostly spoke in Bemba, said he has never see the suffering that Zambians were subjected to under the PF leadership.

“The country is in distress now, shatalamonako abena Zambia ukucula ifi tulecula nomba (I have never seen Zambians suffer the way we are suffering currently),”

Hichilema said.

He also criticised the government over the teacher recruitment exercise, which he called symbolic, saying it was laced with corruption, as most of those recruited were associates of the ruling government and its leaders.

Hichilema also said the number of teachers recruited against those that applied was not inspiring.

“The teachers that are being recruited are too few, banono; kuli ama teachers abengi who are required or are supposed to be teaching but tababapele ama appointment. There are very few teachers that have been appointed against a big number that has been left unemployed,” Hichilema said.

“The second problem is that bacita recruit ama teachers on a selective programme; bambi (others) they are leaving them out and only getting relatives and friends of the PF members and those in government under the PF leadership. That is segregation, icalo cesu tatulefwaya segregation iyo (we don’t want segregation in our country). Others are entitled to be appointed in government but others are not, iyi government yamuntu onse (of all people) but under PF government, yabantu abanonofye (few people only) – the selected few who are PF related or connected.”

The UPND leader further condemned the meager pay given to teachers against the high cost of living.

He further complained about the delay in formalising the payroll system for the teachers whom he said were being kept for a long time without salaries.

Hichilema said the money that was pocketed by individuals involved in the procurement of fire engines would have been used to better the conditions of service for most teachers.

“What we are saying ba moderator is that ulupiya emo lwaba mu (money is there in) Zambia. This country is so rich but what we have is a disease, a cancer which is not basically able to be healed under the PF. Abanesu abali mu PF baleonaula impiya (they are misusing money) through corruption,” he said.

Hichilema further explained to the listeners his party’s economic vision, particularly on how to create jobs, lower the cost of doing business and empowering Zambians.

He said the UPND would find lasting solutions to the failing agriculture sector.

Hichilema added that the money being wasted by the PF government on expensive projects could be used to change the face of farming and decent education for the underprivileged.

“$700,000, balisenda through corruption, so the money is there. If you say 42 fire machines, let me give you a very clear example; ngatulelanda, other people are saying tatumfwa bwino ifilanda HH pa radio but if you are making $700,000 on one fire machine through corruption, multiply that by 42; someone has gone away with $20.4 million,” Hichilema explained. “There is the money to pay the teachers properly, there is the money to pay the farmers on their crop, there is the money to send children to school abashakwata ulupiya, abana banshiwa na bana babachushi, ifwe kuti twabasenda ku sukulu (those without money, orphans and children of the poor) by having zero tolerance to corruption.”

He said the Ndola-Lusaka dual carriageway was another wasteful and corruption laced project, as the money spent on it could have been channelled to making a better life for Zambians.

Hichilema maintained that the project was over priced and money pocketed by the PF leadership at the expense of the poor and the taxpayers.

“I can give another example, the Lusaka Ndola road is costing another $1.2 billion…$1.2 billion; mwalyumfwako ulupiya lwamusango uyu (have you ever heard such a large sum) when the road should cost less than $600 million? So nga mwafunya (if you subtract) $1.2 billion, let’s say the road was costing $500 million, I will tell why I am saying $500 million elo mwacita deduct you will find my dear friends that $700 million has been stolen through corruption by the PF government officials,”  said Hichilema.

“Nomba tontonkanyenipo, $700 million lupiya ulwingi sana. So kuti twafilwa shani ifwe ba UPND ukulipila decent salaries kuma teachers? Not too much money but fair salaries that ama teachers kuti bashita ifyakulya muma yanda (now let’s think of this; US$700 million,  is a lot of money. So how can we, the UPND, fail to pay teachers decent salaries?)”


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