ALL those who are currently plundering national resources will be held to account one day, says Patriots for Economic Progress leader Sean Tembo.
He appealed to National Road Fund Agency to consider renaming the Ndola tollgate from Micheal Chilufya Sata Toll Plaza to Edgar Chagwa Lungu Toll Plaza as it was laced with corruption.
“As Patriots for Economic Progress, we strongly believe that it is immoral for those who failed to make it in the corporate world to now want to bestow undeserved opulence upon themselves using poor people’s taxpayers’ money, simply because they have been put into public office,” Tembo said. “It must be noted that the primary purpose of public office is to serve the public, and not to engage in personal self-aggrandisement. Make no mistake about it; all those who are currently plundering national resources will be held to account one day. If not in this life, then definitely in the next.”
Tembo said: “As Patriots for Economic Progress, we have noted with regret the decision by the National Road Fund Agency (NRFA), to name the tollgate located on the Ndola-Kitwe road, after the late president, His Excellency Mr Michael Chilufya Sata, given the fact that this particular tollgate is associated with corruption after having been constructed at an inflated price of about K55 million.”
He said naming the corruption-laced tollgate after a distinguished statesman was an insult.
“As Patriots for Economic Progress, we believe that it is demeaning and insulting to the family of the late president Sata to have his name associated with corruption in such a manner,” Tembo said. “On this basis, we wish to appeal to NRFA, as we hereby do, to consider renaming the said tollgate from Michael Chilufya Sata Toll Plaza to Edgar Chagwa Lungu Toll Plaza, so that those who engage in corruption must be the ones that should be associated with corruption, as opposed to maligning the names of Honourable statesmen such as the late former Republican President, His Excellency Mr Michael Chilufya Sata, may his soul continue to Rest In Peace.”
Tembo said PeP was gravely disappointed with the PF and President Lungu’s lame efforts of labouring to justify the expenditure on the Ndola tollgate.
“As Patriots for Economic Progress, we wish to put it on record that we are extremely disappointed with the lame efforts of government in general, and President Lungu in particular, to try and justify how a simple tollgate structure can cost K55 million,” said Tembo. “Our estimate is that the said tollgate did not cost more than K3 million to construct and that President Lungu must be compelled to give the people of Zambia a proper explanation as to what happened to the K52 million change.”
Meanwhile, Tembo, on behalf of the alliance of ten opposition political parties, expressed regret at the continued unprovoked insults on the leaders, coming from the PF, through its spokesperson, Sunday Chanda.
“Our position on this matter is that President Edgar Lungu ought to be held responsible for the unprovoked insults that his PF party showers on us, their political opponents. If President Lungu wants to argue that he is not aware of the insults that his PF party has been continuously showering on political opponents, then he is by default admitting that he is a spineless leader who is not in control of his political party and that the ruling Patriotic Front is a dysfunctional organization where any party official says what they want without any procedure, protocol or chain of command,” Tembo said yesterday.
“If on the other hand, the President admits that he is aware of and has sanctioned the unprovoked insults that are coming from his PF party spokesperson [media director], Mr Sunday Chanda, then Mr Lungu is practicing childish politics of insults which have no room in our civilised society, and we appeal to him to introspect and consider adopting mature politics where we can argue, as political players, on the basis of ideas and not on the basis of insults.”
Tembo, who is alliance chairperson of the media and finance committees, said President Lungu must note that opposition leaders respect him and they would not want to publicly trade insults with him.
“But we shall not be shy to respond accordingly, should his unprovoked insults on us, through his proxies like Mr Sunday Chanda, continue,” said Tembo.
Chanda has recently branded the opposition alliance a meeting of goats.