HARRY Kalaba says to ‘preserve’ himself from agony, from shedding unnecessary tears, President Edgar Lungu should just gracefully leave, without going for third term in 2021.
Kalaba says he has never come across a leader who is as casual as President Lungu.
The Democratic Party (DP) president was speaking on Hot FM radio’s Hot Seat programme on Thursday.
“As far as I’m concerned, President Lungu has been to the polls twice. We’ll tell the people that President Lungu is going for a third term. He has been allowed [by the Constitutional Court] and let him stand but for us, as far as we are concerned, he will appear for third time on the ballot paper,” Kalaba said.
“In any case, let me advise President Lungu; there is no need to leave disgracefully. President Lungu, strictly speaking, the way he came in in a reconciliatory manner is a President we should have all been rallying around for him to get a Mo Ibrahim award. President Lungu should not be misled by people telling him that he should stand for a third term. Those who are singing praises for him are lying to him. There are very few people who love the President and that’s why they lie to him. They want to keep their jobs.”
The opposition leader noted that Zambians had “lost interest in the man”.
“So to preserve him from agony, from shedding unnecessary tears, the President should just gracefully leave. I don’t mind him appointing anybody he wants to appoint from his party to stand as President because whoever he is going to appoint we will defeat them. All I’m saying is that Mr President, for the love and respect I have [for you]…” he said.
Kalaba said it was time for the DP to take Zambia back on the rightful path because: “everything have collapsed.”
“As Chinua Achebe wrote, things have fallen apart. We don’t have a leadership that is ambitious. The leadership that we have is very unambitious, very unpatriotic, extremely selfish, inept. We are reaching very annoying levels where you have leaders who seem not to be moved by anything,” Kalaba lamented.
“The levels of corruption are so nauseating and you also find that the cost of living in this country is so excruciating. Everything in this country is in free-fall and because things are like that, people are now losing direction because they don’t even know what the leaders think.”
He said nothing moved in an economy where political leaders had a hands-off attitude.
“If this is the laissez-faire which President has… President is very casual [and] I have never come across a leader that is [as] casual as President Lungu! He is detached, he has got the dollars, he has got bread,” Kalaba said.
On the deregistration of some political parties, Kalaba charged that chief registrar of societies Thandiwe Mhende was a PF cadre.
“If you go in her (Mhende’s) house, you’ll find PF regalia. It’s civil servants like that who are giving the civil service a bad name,” he said.
Meanwhile, Kalaba observed that the best for Zambia was yet to come.
“The spirit of Nalumino Mundia, Munukayumbwa Sipalo Matthew Nkanza, Peter Matoka has to permeate even this generation,” noted Kalaba.