Lungu stands firm
Published On July 21, 2015 » 2342 Views» By Administrator Times » HOME SLIDE SHOW, SHOWCASE
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• PRESIDENT Edgar Lungu (right) shakes hands with Chief Hanjalika of Mazabuka District as Chief Nyawa of Kazungula District (left wearing hat) looks on. Picture by BRIAN HATYOKA.

• PRESIDENT Edgar Lungu (right) shakes hands with Chief Hanjalika of Mazabuka District as Chief Nyawa of Kazungula District (left wearing hat) looks on. Picture by BRIAN HATYOKA.

By BRIAN HATYOKA and CATHERINE NYIRENDA –

PRESIDENT Edgar Lungu has said he will not be distracted by empty criticism, insults, innuendos and false accusations against his leadership but will focus on promoting development in the country.
Mr Lungu has urged Zambians to work together and focus on developing the country.
“We are all Zambians and we have lived together and we will continue living as one. So, count on me as your unifying factor because I have come here in the province (Southern) to listen to the elders who are traditional leaders.
“They will tell me what they think is right and then I will pick what I think I can do and move forward because we are all one people one nation,” Mr Lungu said.
Mr Lungu said this upon arrival at Harry Mwaanga Nkumbula International Airport in Livingstone yesterday where he met 26 Southern Province Chiefs at Chrismar Hotel.
Addressing people who welcomed him at the airport in Tonga and English, Mr Lungu said he was in the tourist capital to dialogue with the traditional leaders.
He was accompanied by Justice Minister Ngosa Simbyakula, State House Deputy Minister Mulenga Sata, Special Assistant for Political Affairs Kaizer Zulu and Special Assistant for Press and Public Relations Amos Chanda and Livingstone member of Parliament Lawrence Evans.
He urged the people of Southern Province not to be cheated by people who were claiming that the province was not liked by the current Government.
He said it was shameful for people who were saying that Zambia would not move forward.
“There is always room for them in future if they merit and impress people that they can be leaders.
“But Zambians will only give chance to a unifier and a builder. We don’t want people who put food under the bed when they see visitors.
We want to be eating together,” Mr Lungu said.
He asked Zambians to emulate him as he was able to visit and embrace places where people did not vote for him.
“My job is to unite. I go to Western, Southern and North-Western provinces and come 2016, I am sure I will get those votes and those who are thinking that I am wasting my time are cheating themselves.
“I am ready for 2016 and through the law and democracy; you (people) will decide yourselves as Zambians. For now, enjoy yourself and go about  your business whether you are PF or United Party for National Development (UPND) but vote for leaders who will unite the country,” he said.
He said his administration wanted to promote peace, unity and love.
Mr Lungu said people could easily see what the PF Government was doing to develop the country but they were ignoring such facts.
“There is so much bitterness among some people who did not win the January 2015 elections as well as in 2011 elections and 2008 elections but what makes people win is what you do.
“So for me and the PF, we are ready for the 2016 general elections. Where there are issues, let’s sit down and talk. If things are wrong, don’t sit down to start plotting evil things and say I will kill him or he will die tomorrow. Life is a preserve of God as He is the one who gives and takes away,” Mr Lungu said.
Earlier, Southern Province minister Nathaniel Mubukwanu said Southern Province was always pleased when President Lungu was visiting the area.
“Government programmes are going on smoothly in the province and people in the province have shown a lot of appreciation to your leadership and governance style,” Mr Mubukwanu said.
Southern Province has 33 chiefdoms out of which 29 are gazetted and three succession cases are in court while one chief is yet to be gazetted.
Only four chiefs namely Naluwama for Mazabuka, Ufwenuka for Monze, Moomba for Kazungula and Mwanachingwala for Mazabuka were absent during the meeting due to ill health.
Meanwhile, President Lungu is concerned that there is too much bitterness among politicians such that they cannot see the developments that the Patriotic Front (PF) administration is undertaking in the country.
Mr Lungu said the opposition political party leaders were bitter such that they were not seeing anything positive in what he as the head of State was doing for the nation.
“The politicians are bitter because they are power hungry, let them wait for 2016, it’s evident that  I am heading for the finish line, before that, let them wait for the by-elections in Bangweulu and Solwezi,” Mr Lungu said.
He said this at Kenneth Kaunda International Airport (KKIA) yesterday before departure for Livingstone to meet the traditional leaders from Southern Province.
He also disclosed that there would soon be a by-election in Kasama Central following reports that area Member of Parliament (MP) Geoffrey Mwamba was planning on crossing over to the UPND.
President Lungu also regretted that some opposition political party leaders were using traditional leaders to promote divisions in the country.

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