Zambians only appreciate presidents when they leave office, complains Lungu


(By Charles Tembo in Ndola)

NSHAKULAUMFWA ifyabupuba, President Edgar Lungu has said. And President Lungu has complained that Zambians do not appreciate, saying they only do so after a president is out of office. Meanwhile, President Lungu says he will not listen to the outside world who just want to see the PF fail in 2021.

He also said he will not fall again, because he already fell as his name is Chagwa.

Addressing PF officials upon arrival at Simon Mwansa Kapwepwe International Airport in Ndola on Friday, President said he was aware that some people want to see the PF out of power in 2021.

“Power should be to the people because it’s the people with power. So as we work, we should not be worried with what others are saying outside and in the country. Here we are working for the people. There are people whose agenda is to distract the government from working for the people, to stop government from working for development. I want to take this opportunity and say nshakulaumfwa ifyabupuba (I will not be listening to foolish stuff),” President Lungu said.

“There are people whose sole intention is to see this government fail so that by 2021, they can point to the failures of government by saying ‘where are the roads you promised the people of Zambia? Where is the safe drinking water? Where are the health facilities you promised? PF you have failed government’, that is what they want to achieve and by distracting us and persistently condemning us when we do the right things, nshafyumfwe (I won’t pay attention to that).”

He said the PF promised to work for Zambians.

“Twalaya ukubombela abantu. Ifintu nga fyalubana (we will go to work for the people. If things go wrong), we have a responsibility of owning up and tell the people that ifintu nafilubana apa (things have gone wrong here), not to shy away, no. When I took the decision to relieve some of my colleagues of their appointment, it is not out of malice, not out of that I am listening to the opposition, no. I saw that there was need. I’m saying this because Zambians don’t appreciate! What Dr Kaunda did, what Dr Chiluba did, they only appreciate after they’ve left,” President Lungu said. “The same with Levy Mwanawasa, they only appreciated him after he left office. They are even mourning that we had a great leader. About Rupiah Banda, saying the same about Michael Sata. I have learnt a lesson from these great sons of Zambia that when you are president, they [Zambians] won’t give you space, they keep distracting you.”

He said he would not fall again and fail the country.

“If you are not strong, you will fall, when you fall they are happy, but I can assure you that I’m not falling because my name is Chagwa, naliwakale ine, nalyima nokwima (I already fell down, I even stood up), so I’m not falling again. So I’m telling you, let us listen to what they are saying, ifya mano tuleumfwa, fiwelewele twafisula (sensible things we should listen but useless stuff we should forsake),” said President Lungu. “There are so many people talking and I feel uluse (pity) …mwalanda muluamaano twalafibomfya, pantu amano mambulwa (you speak with wisdom, we will use it, because wisdom can come from anywhere), so I want to walk with the people of Zambia. So I chose knowledge. I will not relent in cooperating and collaborating with partners whether from the west, east, from China, I will cooperate and collaborate with them, so long it is in the interest of bringing development to the people of Zambia. There is a Chinese leader who said it does not matter if a cat is white or black, so long it is catching a mouse. So tulefwaya Zambia kuya pantanshi (we want Zambia to progress). I promise you that let them talk. Those who got their say will say. They will have their say, I will have my way for the Zambian people.”

And Copperbelt PF chairman Stephen Kainga said the PF had not found anything wrong with President Lungu’s leadership and the Chinese issues.

“Copperbelt is happy to see you. It is happy that you are delivering what you promised the people of Zambia. Small parties…don’t have anything to say. Your leadership and the Chinese, there is nothing wrong we have found. So continue to work with the Chinese,” said Kainga.

Earlier, Copperbelt minister Japhen Mwakalombe said President Lungu had transformed the province.

“Copperbelt has been transformed because our women were queuing for water. Taxi and bus drivers were moving in potholed roads, but this is not the case now,” said Mwakalombe.

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