Party Headquarters, Lusaka, Zambia – We appreciate the role General Olesugun Obasanjo is trying to play as an elderly African statesman in discussing the political developments in Zambia. Sometimes, however, we feel he is trying too much, especially when it comes to the seemingly hapless but nevertheless reckless comments he keeps making regarding the on-going trial of Hakainde Hichilema.
For those without history to this article, General Obasanjo is a former military ruler whose military regime ran the affairs of Nigeria between 1976 and 1979.
Hichilema on the other hand is a political player in Zambia who has lost elections five times and the losses seem to have left him bitter and angry at the political system and democracy in Zambia.
Especially after being beaten twice by President Edgar Lungu in 2015 and 2016. It is clearly painful
Despite losing elections every five years like clock-work making him the’ biggest loser’ in the history of Zambian politics, Hichilema always comes out fighting saying the Electoral Commission of Zambia and the entire Zambian people stole the polls from him and only him alone.
Recently he has come up with a new mantra “I won’t accept the results and Edgar Lungu is not my President I don’t recognise him,” a trend seen as fanning anarchy here in peaceful Zambia.
Things worsened on 8th April because instead of just stewing in his hate and contempt, Hichilema defied police and an entire security detail and did not give way to a Presidential motorcade as per requirement by law since independence. He has since been arrested for this charade that experts say could have ended up killing President Edgar Lungu on that day—the repercussions of the possible death, one cannot fathom.
Above are the facts as they stand in court and they remain undisputed.
However, in a bid to be relevant and to continue getting paid, Mr Obasanjo, a former military leader (to his credit in 1999 he won a civilian election in Nigeria) though a Leopard rarely changes its spots so they say, has been making all manner of poisonous statements on Zambia.
If you were not in Zambia today, you would think the serene southern African nation was on fire based on the inflammatory statements coming out of Mr Obasanjo and his boss Greg Mills, the head of the Oppenheimer financed Brenthurst Foundation. Critical questions for the reader: who heads the Foundation? What sought of relationship does he have with Hichilema? Was he in Zambia before the last elections? What kind of services did he offer to the UPND leader? Who is the Chairperson for the Foundation? Answering these questions will reveal why this cartel is bent on giving Zambia a bad name!
We all know how the Oppeinhermer’s made their money in South Africa under the apartheid regime—money from diamonds as 80 percent of black South Africans died in poverty and remain poor today.
The oppeinheimer’s swim in stupendous wealth today as they bankroll the Brenthurst Foundation through former military leader Obasanjo and Mills to make it appear as of Zambia is on fire.
Zambia is not on fire – it is a country that observes the rule of law and respects outcomes of elections until the black spot hit our history with the defiance of Hichilema funded by Oppenheimer’s Brenthurst.
Leaders have lost elections in the past and accepted results and these include our founding father Dr Kenneth Kaunda and that tenacious founder of PF President Michael Sata, Rupiah Banda, and a list does exist and it is not made up.
What makes Hichilema beaten twice different?
The entire international community starting from former US President Barak Obama, Angela Merkel of Germany, the Queen of England, Presidents Jacob Zuma of South Africa, Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya, Yoweri Museveni Uganda, Pope Francis II and indeed all leaders from functioning democracies in Africa and beyond endorsed the election of President Lungu. How hard is it for Brenthurst, Obasanjo and Hichilema to swallow humble pie and accept the poll?!
In democracy, unlike Anglo America supported Brenthurst, there is always a winner and a loser. In this case, Hichilema lost the election, President Lungu won the election. Its that simple!
It is wrong for the former military leader to coach Zambia on democracy, we have never had a military regime and neither have we exploited diamonds and gold from Kimberley to become stupendously rich at the expense of 80 percent poor South Africans.
We resent the deliberate bad press and distorted facts Anglo America and retired military ruler Obasanjo are placing on a peaceful nation like Zambia that has been embraced by the United States, the UK, France, China, Russia and everyone else.
Mr Obasanjo was once accused of being responsible for political repression in Nigeria. In one particular recorded instance, the compound of Nigerian immensely famous musician and political activist Fela Kuti was raided and gutted to the ground after a member of his commune was involved in an altercation with military personnel.
Mr Fela, the late and his family especially female family members were beaten and raped and his mother, political activist Funmilayo Ransome Kuti, was killed by being thrown from a window. This happened under Gen Obasanjo and Mr Fela’s mother’s coffin was carried to General Obasanjo’s barracks as a protest against political and military repression according to existing records.
Is this the kind of man that can condemn the administration of President Lungu, a law abiding Christian President?
As a party, we are tired of reading distortions in the international press skewed at making us look bad. From now on, every lie told about us shall be countered with the harsh truth of those peddling the lies. Stop telling lies about Zambia and President Lungu, we shall stop telling the truth about you too!
Give Justice a chance, this is Zambia, not a military regime or a Family Trust!
We conclude by advising the retired military leader to read through the statements being issued in his name in future and not just the balance in his bank account. There is more to democracy than a pay check from the Opeinheimers. General Obasanjo’s democratic credentials are not without stains! Those that come to the table with justice must do so with clean hands.
Mrs. Mumbi Phiri
Patriotic Front Deputy Secretary General
Sunday Chanda, Director for Media
Patriotic Front Headquarters