KABWE mayor Prince Chileshe has accused Kabwe Central PF member of parliament Tutwa Ngulube of being at the helm of confusion that has chased several investors in the town.
But Ngulube has challenged Chileshe to state whether demolishing people’s houses can be deemed as development and asked him to state the source of his wealth when “two years ago, he was even failing to buy talk time”.
Speaking during a press briefing in Kabwe at the civic centre on Monday, Chileshe told the residents to rise and defend their development.
Chileshe declared Kabwe Municipal Council as the most interfered with council in the country, limiting its service provision to the people.
He alleged that Ngulube’s interference in council operations had made the council lose out on investment opportunities.
“We have to wake up Zambians. This is not time for you and me to waste time on people, regardless of their status and education background, to sway our focus on national development programmes. As long as they do not have a plan and cannot speak and act in the best interest of the people of Zambia, such individuals must be excused and not listened to if we are to allow our leaders to effectively carry out their mandate towards the sustainable delivery of services to better the lives of our people,” Chileshe said.
“We want the people of Kabwe to know that our silence must not be taken advantage of because we don’t want to join a bandwagon of small brains who are concentrating on personalities and never concerned about the larger picture of the economic development of our country, which demands that we engage more frequently to find solutions to the challenges facing our people. As mayor of Kabwe, I want to encourage the people of Kabwe to rise and defend their development because they know that it’s the Kabwe Central member of parliament Honourable Tutwa Ngulube, who is at the helm of the confusion that has chased several investors, depriving Kabwe residents of the needed revenue and employment opportunities.”
He lamented that if the hostile environment was left unchecked, it would rob Kabwe of many investment opportunities, stressing that some had already been missed owing to the continued disunity and selfishness.
“In our quest to develop our country, Zambians must not only be seen to be holding public officers and elected officers accountable on issues relating to financial mismanagement but must take a much proactive step towards holding leaders accountable for derailing and frustrating developmental programmes. It is important that citizens know that we have leaders who have dedicated their time to fighting government projects because of their selfishness and no plan to serve the people who elected them into office,” said Chileshe.
But Ngulube said corruption levels at the Kabwe council were the cause for the underdevelopment in the area.
He challenged Chileshe to state how he has become rich when during the campaign period he was a pauper.
“The allegations are baseless; if demolishing houses is development then they can say I am hampering development. You know very well that I have been fighting injustice at the council ever since the whole thing started; I have been fighting the displacement of the poor and the farmers. Go to Ministry of Lands, Honourable Jean Kapata will tell you ‘yes’…she supports my position on the unlawful displacement of the people. The Kabwe Municipal Council has failed to deliver development, not because of me but because of corruption,” Ngulube said.
“Right now if you go to the council, you will find that workers have not even been paid their April salaries, they were getting the March salaries two weeks ago. All that they can’t blame it on me. Retirees at the Council are not getting any money, and there is no money as all the money is being stolen. If I am lying that those guys are corrupt, let Prince Chileshe tell the nation how much money he had in 2016 and where he has gotten the money to build five mansions, two lodges and all those things I am talking about. If he thinks I am talking from without, he will be shocked.”
He further told Chileshe to begin preparing for prison.
“I will not be responding to the allegations in the media, I can prove what I am saying. Let me one day take you, will drive you through Kabwe and show you the properties Prince Chileshe has managed to build in a very short period of time. His nick name was Lazaro [a pauper] during the campaign period, he never even used to have money for talk time, he didn’t even have a bank account or TPIN certificate, he was not even in business and all of us know that he was being kept by the wife who works in the government but now Prince Chileshe is one of the richest people in Kabwe,” said Ngulube. “He does not have loans but where has the money come from? So my response about that allegation of me blocking the council and hampering development [is that they] are baseless. There is no development, no school, no road that I have blocked…the development that I have blocked there at Chishani Bus station is a situation where the council go to demolish other people’s shops and impose development in the same area, the case is in court. I will continue fighting and defending people’s plots and I want to urge him to start preparing for Prison, that’s what I can say,” said Ngulube.