HEAL the nation by saying ‘I am very sorry’ over the Bemba thieves statement, chief Hamusonde has advised President Edgar Lungu.
He said President Lungu should not “hide behind his finger, it is not too large to obscure him like a tree, so let him say sorry.”
And Hamusonde of Bweengwa has called for peace and unity among the people of Sinazongwe after the death of chief Sinazongwe.
In an interview, Hamusonde said it was unfortunate that President Lungu could opt to issue such a comment.
“President Lungu needs to be so careful of his comments, it may be said as having been a comment based on traditional cousinship but this went too far. He should realise that you can’t kill somebody based on chimbuyaship [traditional cousinship]. As a Lundwe-Tonga-Ila man, my cousins are the Lozis and North-Westerners but I need to be careful of what I say and the moment I realise that my comments have gone too far, I should swallow my pride and say I am sorry,” he said.
“So my advice to President Lungu is to just say ‘I am very sorry, I did not realise that my joke or comment was going to be misunderstood to this extent’. He should not hide behind his finger, it is not too large to obscure him like a tree, so let him say sorry. He will lose nothing by saying sorry.”
Hamusonde said despite not being a Bemba or Easterner, he was looking at the negative aspect of the comment ‘six out of ten thieves are Bemba’ remark made by the President.
He also noted that despite the ‘Bemba thieves’ statement, the Chinese were also offended by President Lungu’s comments that they were like cockroaches, which had serious consequences on foreign relationships with the Chinese government.
“We all know that the Rwandan genocide was instigated by such a statement of ‘cockroaches’ and this should be the last thing one Head of State can make against foreign nationals,” he said.
Hamusonde said all well-meaning Bemba speaking people and the Chinese would forgive the Head of State if he sought their forgiveness.
“I am not a politician but I know when I should advise one person to ask for forgiveness. We have a lot of people saying that he was not wrong as this was chimbuya while others are saying he was wrong. As a Head of State, he should be seen to be a unifier and the best he can do is to unite Zambians against these statements and the best is to say ‘I am sorry, please forgive me’, this will not take away his credibility as a President of our great nation,” he said.
On late chief Sinazongwe, Hamusonde appealed for peace and unity in the chiefdom as they lay to rest their traditional leader.
Hamusonde said a chief’s tenure was lifelong and God given.
“Since God has decided to take him, we only pray that his subjects and family will mourn him with the dignity that he deserves having been God given, they should also pray that God gives them another leader to continue chief Sizongwe’s leadership,” said Hamusonde.