Authentic Advocates for Justice and Democracy has advised Emeritus Archbishop Telesphore Mpundu to preach peace ahead of next years tripartite elections and to play a fatherly role and not as a politician.
Organization President Josephat Changwe has told Smart Eagles in an interview that it is very disappointing to see the Archbishop, who is supposed to focus on preaching peace, love and unity is the one trying to bring division in the country.
“The church is a sanctuary for all believers regardless of political affiliation. Hence has a role to play in promoting a culture of peace among the people especially youths for them to become good and responsible leaders as they are the leaders of tomorrow,” he said.
“The church needs to reach out to the youth who are vulnerable. Young people are faced with challenges such as lack of jobs, early marriages and pregnancies, substance abuse and a high rate of HIV infections. The church needs to reach out to the youth who really need its counsel.”
Mr. Changwe said it is of grave concern to his organization and sad to note that in the past year or so the honorable Archbishop has been issuing dangerous political statements that have the potential to send this country into war.
“Zambia has been known for its peace-loving people worldwide, As Authentic Advocates For Justice and Democracy we will not allow Archbishop Mpundu to just destroy it despite all the presidents effort to ensure that peace continues to reign in our country,” he added.
“We urge Christians and all the politicians to work for peace, to preach peace and unity and avoid partisan politics.”
Speaking on The Assignment programme hosted by Andrew Mwansa on Muvi TV on Sunday evening, Archbishop Mpundu said that the “shameful” Bill No. 10 should have been correctly called Bill third term for Lungu and pointed out that President Edgar Lungu had already been elected twice and therefore, ineligible to contest for the presidency for the third time.
The clergyman noted that a law that was made to benefit a person or a small group or even a big group of people against others was right from the word go, wrong.
“It’s shameful for many reasons. First of all, why is it that every administration that comes to State House wants to change the Constitution in order to perpetuate themselves in power? This is wrong!” Archbishop Mpundu said. “They are tampering with the Constitution in order to perpetuate themselves in power. They will be remaining there to continue maladministration in this country. It is a shameful bill! That Bill 10 they should have simply called it Bill third term [because] they want to give a third term to Lungu.”
“That’s what it is! What they see in that (Bill 10) is not only to perpetuate Lungu in State House but also it is designed in a way such that perhaps one person among those who are aspiring to become [presidential] candidates will be disqualified. It is criminal!” Archbishop Mpundu said. “So, it is a shameful bill [and] it should be withdrawn. Anyone who has been elected twice as President of the Republic of Zambia cannot run for a [third time]. This is what has happened to Lungu; (being elected twice). So, he is not eligible.”
Archbishop Mpundu added that Bill 10 would sow seeds of dissension, especially after the August 2021 elections.
“That is what happened [with] the disputed elections, the last ones. What happened to HH (Hakainde Hichilema)? Things like that might happen again,” he cautioned. “It is unfortunate [that] we have lost an opportunity to dialogue. Everything was in place after the Commonwealth people came here…People are taking the peace that we have in this country for granted. It is something that has been hard-won but now it will be destroyed.”