[By Charles Tembo in Mufulira]
UMWENSO ninfwa, Zambia chalo chesu bonse, says UPND President Hakainde Hichilema.
Meanwhile, taxi drivers and members of the public in Mufulira on Friday went on rampage and beat up PF cadres who had stormed Mafken FM radio in an attempt to disrupt a radio program which featured Hichilema.
Hichilema said this on Friday afternoon when he featured on Mafken FM radio in Mufulira and Radio Icengelo.
He said there was no need to be scared of any threats because the police have to arrest criminals threatening others.
“Zambia is one people who are a family, fighting for the common good. Mwenso ninfwa (fear is a sign of death), Zambia chalo chesu bonse (country for all of us). So there is no need to be afraid. No one should be allowed to create boundaries for anyone,” Hichilema said.
“The people of Zambia are the ones who are ready for 2021 and they know what to do. It is the pain that the people are going through that is making us, making them ready for 2021.”
He said despite having COVID19 pandemic, the political playing field should be leveled.
“We know the challenges that we face but together we will create a better regime for all. Kopala is for everyone. With COVID-19, it is a challenge to meet the people but there must be a level playing field for all,” he said.
“People should be free to mingle in line with COVID-19 guidelines. Police should arrest criminals threatening others. What crime have we done for someone to stand up and start threatening us? Mwenso ninfwa,” he said.
Hichilema said there was need to give hope to the miners that were losing jobs everyday.
“We need to be giving hope back to the people that are now hopeless. Losing jobs in the mines is now normal for this government. The current leadership is creating ghost towns and misery for the people. Without planning, it is impossible to save jobs. The jobs in the mines are now at stake. A serious government can’t allow the economy on the Copperbelt to collapse.”
He said the small scale mines were just used during campaigns.
“Don’t lie to the small scale miners. Why should they just be important when it’s elections and campaigns? Give them 10 per cent and get it back after elections. These dump sites should not be used for campaigns, we need to grow our small scale miners by giving them licences to do proper mining. Consistence is important for the people,” he said.
Hichilema said Zambia needs to fight the virus that has killed the economy and creating poverty to the people.
“So the dununa reverse is a serious virus that we need to fight. Today we have the Corona virus. Zesco needs an employment audit, there are a lot of cadres that don’t even have qualifications at the expense of qualified engineers.”
Hichilema was connected via telephone on the radio station, which was also broadcast on Radio Icengelo.
But PF cadres stormed Mafken FM radio which is in the central business district of Mufulira to disrupt the broadcast.
However, taxi drivers who were following the programme from their ranks next to the building followed the PF cadres who were dressed in bullet-proof vest and carrying tasers.
It is at this point that the taxi drivers confronted the PF cadres and a fight ensued.
But the PF cadres where outnumbered and beaten, before UPND youths who where providing security at the radio station joined in.
Meanwhile, UPND Copperbelt Chairman Elisha Matambo condemned the storming of the radio station.
“We would like to strongly condemn the PF thugs who attacked Mafken Radio station on the Copperbelt which was hosting our party President, Mr Hakainde Hichilema. At the same time, we would like to thank the people of Mufulira for standing up in self-defense against the PF thugs who even had police weapons. The PF must not be taking advantage of the peace loving Zambians. As citizens maybe aware, our leader was scheduled to feature on the said radio station but if switching off power was not enough, the PF sent thugs to attack the radio station. This is uncalled for and must not be tolerated. Once more, thank you to the people of Mufulira for standing up for your rights and defending yourselves against those PF hooligans,” said Matambo.
“Violence has no place in our country and just like we don’t stay in the PF lane, we ask them to not stay in our lane as well. In the same vein, let me reiterate that wherever president Hakainde Hichilema visits in Zambia, especially in areas where PF thuggish leaders have declared a ‘no go area’ zone, our people assisted by ordinary citizens will go and defend him from this PF nonsense which infringes on freedoms of assembly, association and speech. That’s the language PF understands and today ordinary people have spoken it.”