[By Ben Mbangu in Kalomo]
CHIEF Siachitema says Zambians must not fear to tell their President when something goes wrong.
Speaking at his palace when PF member of the central committee Kebby Mbewe paid a courtesy call on him last Friday, Siachitema said President Edgar Lungu must not be afraid to visit Southern Province.
“Why is President Lungu scared of meeting us? Let him visit us so that we can be telling him our problems and find solutions together. As citizens we must not fear to tell our President when something goes wrong,” he said.
And Siachitema appealed to the PF government not to turn a blind eye on the problems facing the people in the area.
“Don’t ignore us. Please pay attention to our cries. We are your children, work for us. I’m happy that MCC Mbewe you have come here at my palace. This is how it should be. Keep visiting us so that we can be sharing notes,” he said. “We have always been working with the government of the day since 1964 because that’s the culture we were taught and I wonder why now this relationship is no longer strong from your side.”
Siachitema also stressed the need for peace in the country.
“There must be peace in the country because if there is peace even development can take place. Where there is development there is less negative talk,” said Siachitema.
In response, Mbewe said it was the desire of President Lungu to strengthen the relationship between the traditional leadership and government.
“President Lungu values the role you traditional leaders play in the governance of chiefdoms. I want to pledge that as PF party and government we will continue to improve our relationship with you our people because you entrusted us with power for us to work for you,” said Mbewe. “And if you give us another mandate in the forthcoming August general elections we will continue bringing you development here just like we worked on Dundumwezi road, mobile network towers and electricity.”
Meanwhile, President Lungu has donated 100 bicycles to headmen in Siachitema’s chiefdom.
Delivering the bicycles on behalf of President Lungu, Mbewe said the PF had made a serious alliance with the headmen across the country.
“You will never have another President like President Lungu who will work with the traditional leadership. Even if you are bewitched you can change for the better and vote for PF come August general elections,” he said.
Mbewe urged the headmen to be disciples of President Lungu.
“Go flat out and tell your subjects that President Lungu is the right candidate. Be his ambassadors. Give PF councillors and MPs,” he said.
And Mbewe accused UPND members of parliament in the area of only being interested in enriching themselves and not working for the people.
“Most MPs here go to parliament for their tummies only and not service. So this time around let people not look at political parties to vote for but look at which candidate is able to bring development. There are certain political leaders who just want votes for their own selfish gain. And some of these MPs you voted for have their tummies full of tea they drink after getting voted into power,” he said. “You people of Dundumwezi owe President Lungu a vote because in 2016 you committed an abomination but him in response has given you development. Please forgive President Lungu if he did anything wrong to you. He has already showed you love.”
Mbewe urged citizens in the area not to hate chiefs like Chikanta.
“Don’t hate chief Chikanta, he means well for you. If chiefs, MPs, councillors, don’t talk to the President or DC then how can there be development?” wondered Mbewe. “These bicycles are a gift of love which symbolises oneness. Leading people is not just showing political party symbols but working for the people.”
And giving a vote of thanks, headman Mugwagwa thanked President Lungu for remembering them.