FORMER president Rupiah Banda says it is usually difficult for African organisations including political parties to work peacefully together.
Addressing the 35th annual general meeting of the Eastern and Southern Africa Trade and Development Bank (TDA) board of governors meeting on Thursday, Banda said unlike most young people he is able to stay up late at night and read without glasses.
The TDA co-chairperson of the Eminent Persons Advisory Panel also urged Zambians to support finance minister Dr Bwalya Ng’andu if he is to make the difference that is needed by all at this time.
“… I must be grateful to God that I can still read without glasses, most young people have glasses, some lost memory, can’t get up early from bed and they don’t want to stay out late like last night [in reference to the gala dinner on Wednesday],” he said jokingly. “In my case I listened to the masters of
ceremonies with my wife saying that we must relieve the old man… I said to my wife that he just wants to remain alone and enjoy here…I could have stayed on…You can grow old and save the people and thanks for giving me this opportunity (TDA eminent persons co-chair).”
Banda said he had observed the good working relationship of the TDA management, members of staff, and board of governors.
“I have seen with my own eyes, this is the English translation from my own language na menso angu (my own eyes). In my own country, in Africa, in this region you (TDA) have demonstrated what Africa can achieve when it brings together and empowers young world class professionals with bright commitment and high standards,” he said. “Once again, I would like to go backwards and congratulate our leaders then, particularly Dr Kenneth Kaunda who was the host of the inaugural meeting of the TDB.”
He also praised TDA president Admassu Tadesse for his unique style of leadership.
“It is not easy to have such a big group of Africans working together peacefully and pulling in the same
direction. You have achieved what many African organisations including political organisations don’t,” Banda said. “All that we know is pull apart…in this organisation we see harmony, we see how everyone is motivated.”
On Dr Ng’andu, Banda extolled the finance minister’s “background, your experiences, and your honest, your forthrightness in dealing with people.” “I congratulate the President [Edgar Lungu] and call upon all of us Zambians to give you an opportunity to work, to give you time, to give you support, to enable you to make the difference that all of us Zambians need at this time.”