PF must account for its promises to marketeers, says Kambwili

NDC consultant Chishimba Kambwili has said it is time to make the PF government accountable for the promises it has made to marketeers.

Speaking after the start of his party’s campaign trail for the July 26 mayoral by-elections in Lusaka yesterday, Kambwili, who also toured the gutted Comesa market, said it was sad that the PF kept promising marketeers safe trading places but nothing had been done to date.

The Roan member of parliament further wondered why the government was “taking forever” to tell the nation what caused fires at Lusaka’s City Market and Kapalala trading area.

“Its time to take on the PF on matters relating to fires in markets. Each time there is a fire, the President lies to marketeers that his government will do something but nothing happens.Their selective marketeers empowerment is a sham. What happened to City market? Where is the report? What happened to Kapalala market? We will not have the President come here to lie and it becomes business as usual; it’s time to take them on,” Kambwili said.

“We came here to see the extent of the damage so that as we go to Parliament on Tuesday, we take on this government to make sure that what they promise is realised. This is not the first disaster that we have had and the government has promised that they are going to do everything possible to help the marketeers but they have done nothing. This is becoming out of hand. Every year, we put in money for such disasters, they are unforeseen circumstances but we have seen that the markets that have been gutted in the past, government has come forward, made promises that they are going to look after the marketeers, make sure that they won’t suffer but what we see is a selective giving of market empowerment mainly to PF cadres. This is not sitting well with the general populace in the country because PF is not the only party in this country.”

He advised against politicisation of empowerment funds.

“This country has got 73 tribes and about 50 political parties, so if PF wants to help people in such a disaster, they should not be partisan. The people at Kapalala market in Ndola have not been helped yet, the people at City Market have not been helped. It’s becoming nonsensical that a State President can keep on lying to the people of Zambia each time there is a disaster that ‘we are going to help you’ but after one week, they completely forget. On this one, we are going to take them on,” Kambwili said.

Earlier, Kambwili, in the company of the party’s mayoral candidate Saboi Imboela and members of the Central Committee led the party members through Cairo road, Freedom Way and Chachacha Road to mark the beginning of their campaigns for the Lusaka mayoral by-election.

The road show, which began around 10:00 hours, saw the NDC ‘take over town’ as people flashed the party symbol and shouted “Imbwili imbwili.”

On Cairo Road, NDC met the UPND team led by its leader Hakainde Hichilema and the two teams exchanged cordial greetings as they flashed their respective party symbols.

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