CHIEF Hamusonde is advising President Edgar Lungu not to force himself on Zambians.
Hamusonde (r) urges Zambians to take the eligibility issue of President Lungu very serious and set the platform for the future because once disorder is allowed, “prosperity will never forgive us”.
He says President Lungu should emulate chiefs who do not force people to “choose us when they know that we are ineligible” to assume the position.
Hamusonde said if Zambians keep silent and legitimise President Lungu’s third term bid future heads of state would also refuse to leave office knowing that Zambians won’t do anything.
In an interview, Hamusonde of Bweengwa in Monze district said Zambia is backtracking its gains on democracy.
“President Edgar Lungu is a letdown, especially to the law profession because he is the one who is supposed to toe a clean path to democracy. It pains to see the nation being diverted to a topic of President Lungu’s eligibility to contest the 2021 presidency when we have serious issues affecting millions of Zambians especially in rural areas where people especially women have to walk long distances to access medical treatment. And that is if they would find the required drugs at all,” he said. “We have a lot of youths on the streets unemployed, many teachers not recruited, many retirees not paid their dues, and yet there is money to pay youths and women in the name of empowerment. So my simple advice to President Lungu is that: ‘Don’t force yourself on Zambians. We, as chiefs, do not force people to choose us when they know that we are ineligible.”
Hamusonde said Zambians must take the eligibility issue of President Lungu very serious because it could be a stepping stone for future heads of state to refuse to step down.
“If, we as, Zambians allow disorder, prosperity will never forgive us because we will be setting future presidents on the path to refuse leaving office even when they lose or they are not eligible,” said Hamusonde. “So let’s set the platform for our future. Zambia is not ours alone, there are many Zambians being born today, others tomorrow and others 50 years from now. So what do we say to them? Break the law with impunity or follow the law to the letter. It’s all on us, we have a chance next year. Do we want tribal politics to continue? Do we want violence in politics to continue? Do we want politics of insults? Do we want corruption and theft to continue? Nepotism to show its ugly head? It all stops with us next year.”
Last Wednesday, President Lungu told traditional leaders in Mukushi district in Central Province that the Constitutional Court had cleared him to stand again.
President Lungu, who spoke mostly in Bemba, also accused the opposition UPND of misinforming the nation that he wanted to use the failed infamous National Assembly (Amendment) Bill No. 10 of 2019 to push for his eligibility.
“…pantu muli Bill 10 tamwaba icibi icalimo iyo. Ati muli Bill 10 muli third term ya Edgar Lungu, tamwaba third term mulya, iyo. Ba ConCourt batile Lungu acitafye one term, ukufuma mu 2016 ukufika lelo ine ni one term (…because in Bill 10 there was nothing bad. That in Bill 10 there is Lungu’s third term, there is no third term there.
The ConCourt said Lungu has just served one term, from 2016 to today I’ve just done one term),” said President Lungu. “Ilya nabombele iyashile ba Sata one year six months teyandi yaba Sata, efyo balanda ku court. Nomba caisa kosa shani? Mu Bill 10 tamuli mulandu ati Lungu alefwaya ukubwelela imiku itatu, fyabufi. (The one-year six months that I served which Mr Sata left, it’s not mine but Mr Sata’s, that’s what the court said. But where is the problem? There is no issue in Bill 10, but people are saying that Lungu wants to go for a third term, those are lies).”