THERE will be no deception in this government and there is not joyride because children are hurting, says President Hakainde Hichilema.
Speaking when he swore-in the second batch of Cabinet ministers yesterday, President Hichilema said they were coming in government to serve Zambians.
“We wish to state that you are coming in to serve the people of Zambia at a time when you are required to work harder than ever before. To list this economy out of the doldrums, to turn it around in a dramatic manner, not in full five years from now. But to begin to sow the seed of redirection, bottoming up the economy yesterday not tomorrow,” he said. “So we are in a hurry. You should be in a hurry. We are in a hurry to take this country and its people where they should be…better life for all our people.”
He recalled that the UPND Alliance made a commitment to the people of Zambia during their campaigns to bring to the table a cabinet from all of Zambia’s 10 provinces.
President Hichilema urged citizens to do their own audit on the promise made thus far.
“We committed to that and as you will see in the next few days when the full Cabinet will be in place, you will actually do your own audit as citizens, as journalists. Do your own audit and see if we have passed that test,” he said. “I am sure you will agree that test will be passed. For me who has been given this rare opportunity to select colleagues to work with, I am fully happy under the challenges that we face especially that we were not able to get members of parliament in two provinces in our country but we were able to use the instruments available to us to bring all the provinces to the table. That’s the first step or one of the first steps towards reuniting this country…that’s what we committed ourselves to doing and we will walk that talk all the time.”
He further said they committed to the people of Zambia that “we will deliver on a number of issues”.
“And someone the other day was reminding me that ‘HH you made so many promises, how will you deliver these promises?’ I said give me an example, just give me an example of the promises I made. And they reminded me that I said people shall food but I then well, I don’t consider that as a promise. I consider that as a bare minimum for people to eat in a country. Who would seek leadership and fail to see that their people, their children go to bed and have eaten? I said that’s not a promise, that’s a bare minimum,” he said. “So I said give me another one and he said well, ‘you said education for all and I said yes, that too is not a promise. That too is a bare minimum. How would you turn around the economy if citizens, children who are the majority have no skills? I said don’t see it as education individually. See it as a point of view of skills necessary to run the economy and run it well, then you will understand there is nothing any leader should seek public office for if they cannot send their children to school. Because they won’t have skills they require for the kids to be competitive, for kids to run their own businesses. I said give me another, and he say, ‘aah, I think the debate is over’. I understand you, I understand what you have been saying.”
He urged the ministers to understand issues that citizens are asking about and consequently explain to them.
President Hichilema asked the ministers to use the country’s scarce resources properly.
“You the ministers, Cabinet and provincial ministers need to understand this issue that individuals are asking me and you should be able to explain to people and that’s why you are occupying public office to make sure our people have food. To make sure that our children go to school and that means using resources, scarce resources properly, not
taking from the teal,” he said.
President Hichilema said there would be no screed cows stressing zero tolerance to corruption in his government.
“Every resource available owned by the people of Zambia will be utilised to the maximum for the people of Zambia, not for personal gain. Zero tolerance to corruption, no screed cows. I wish not to be misunderstood anymore. Last time I said we will not be vindictive to those that were there before us, neither will we be vindictive to you, us who are coming in now,” President Hichilema said.
He assured Zambians that no political finger will decide who has contravened three rules of engagement in the procurement process.
“It is the Anti-Corruption Commission, it is the Drug Enforcement Commission, it is the Financial Intelligence Centre…I hope after today there will be no misunderstanding, deliberate or whatever. If you don’t agree with corruption, which is your policy, you the new minister, Cabinet and provincial, how is it that you will allow these things to happen? It means you are being deceptive,” said President Hichilema. “There will be no deception in this government. There is no joyride in this government because children are hurting.”
The 14 Cabinet ministers include; Ambrose Lufuma (defence), Jack Mwimbu (home affairs), Stanley kakubo (foreign affairs), Chibwe Kapala – (energy), Mike Mposha (water development and sanitation), Sylvia Masebo (health) Douglas Syakalima (education) and Doreen Sefuke Mwamba at Community Development.
Others are Brenda Tambatamba (labour and social security), Elijah Muchima (lands), Frank Tayali (transport and logistics), Mulambo Haimbe (justice), Charles Milupi (infrastructure) and Felix Mutati at technology and science.
At provincial level he appointed Sheal Mulyata for Lusaka, Elisha Matambo (Copperbelt) and Cornelius Mweetwa for Southern Province.
And Alfred Chipoya is the senior private secretary at State House.
Other ministers that were appointed are Garry Nkombo (local government), Rodney Sikumba (Tourism and Arts), Elias Mubanga (Small and Medium Enterprises), Chushi Kasanda (information and media), Collins Nzovu (Green Economy and Environment), Makozo Chikote (Livestock and Fsheries, Paul Chanda Kabuswe (Mines and Minerals, Mtolo Phiri (Agriculture), Chipoka Mulenga (Commerce and Trade), Elvis Nkandu (Youth and Sport).
Others are Kapelwa Mbangweta (Western Province Minister), Henry Sikazwe (Muchinga), Derrick Chilundika (Luapula), Leonard Mbao (Northern), and Peter Phiri (Eastern).
The President also terminated the appointments of Fredson Yamba as Secretary to the Treasury and replaced him with Felix Nkulukusa.
The Head of State also terminated the appointment of Dr Martin Mtonga as Smart Zambia national coordinator.
He also designated Dr Francis Chipimo to act as Bank of Zambia Governor following the resignation of Christopher Mvunga.