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Monday, September 27, 2021

We had a joke of a President in State House!

Columns We had a joke of a President in State House!

By Prince Bill M. Kaping’a Social/Political Analyst

Way back in 2015, I got an invitation from the office of renowned Nigerian billionaire businessman and philanthropist, Tony Elumelu, for a meeting with him at Taj Pamodzi Hotel in Lusaka while he was in our country on official visit.

But why should this kapyopyo be considered for a meeting with a man who is constantly rubbing shoulders with Queens, Kings and other notable world leaders, I suspect some of you may be wondering.

Well……as was the case with a few others, the invitation came in my capacity as alumni of the Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurship Programme (TEEP). Established by the Executive Chairman of United Bank for Africa, this is a 10-year, $100 million commitment to identify, train, mentor and fund 10,000 entrepreneurs, capable of changing the face of business across Africa.

After a brief address, coupled with sporadic questions about our entrepreneurship journey of course, Uncle Tony announced that he had arranged for us to have lunch with our President so that we could’ve an opportunity to interact with him. Say what! I was one of those least concerned about meeting the President.

“You may be interested to learn that I’ve also done the same for your peers in other countries I’ve been to across Africa, in the past. I think it’s important for connection purposes,” he assured us.

At about 11:00 hours, we thus boarded a shuttle bus and circumnavigated our way to State House in the capital’s traffic frenzy. Little did we know we’d be subjected to a long wait in the parking lot as CEO of TEEP; Parminder Vir OBE, a diminutive British lady of Asian origin, trotted back and forth making frantic efforts to negotiate our passage into State House. However, her efforts seemed to hit a brick wall as the mean-looking, towering individuals in dark suits with walkie talkies who formed the wall of security at the imposing gate seemed unmoved.

After what seemed to be eternity, Margret Mwanakatwe, the Minister of Commerce, Trade & Industry materialized from State House.

“Are these my people from UBA?” she enthused as she walked towards our vehicle in her fake British accent.

Almost everyone was falling all over their feet as they jostled for vantage positions to take selfies with her. I remained rooted to my seat!

“What’s wrong with you, your friends are out there having a good time with your minister and here you’re…… Go out there and enjoy,” she prodded me. I apologetically explained to her I had my own personal reasons for not being part of the fun.

“Don’t worry guys, we are trying to make everything possible for you to meet the President,” the minister assured before taking leave.

It was well after another 2 hours when word finally filtered through that the President wasn’t going to see us. This came as a shock to us! Parminder was particularly incensed. She momentarily flopped in her seat to absorb the unexpected news.

“What’s wrong with Africa!?” she finally found her voice as she recovered from shock. “We travel many hours to come here after many months of negotiations and this is what we get? Now I understand why my brother wasn’t upbeat about our being here.”

Murmurs of agreement quickly echoed in the bus. A sustained hushed silence overwhelmed us as we found our way back in the lunchtime rush hour.

“Anyway, allow to break the silence!” a stout, balding individual who proudly identified himself as a PF party official from Chongwe dramatically rose to his feet. “At times, I tend to agree with assertions that we’ve a playboy in State house. What happened today was embarrassing and isn’t the first time! I’ll give a vivid example….”

He went on to recount an interesting anecdote, very similar to our situation.

A while back, a multibillionaire with business interests spanning continents landed at Kenneth Kaunda International Airport for a scheduled meeting with President Lungu at State House. As the gentleman in question waited to be cleared by security in the lobby, numerous cadres from around the city suddenly stormed State house to present a petition of some sort.

Of course, the President was always thrilled in the company of cadres; he had no qualms relegating his duties to attend to them! A buffet was hastily arranged as an assortment of gallons of alcoholic beverages rapidly made the rounds!

At last, when someone was sober enough to remind the President there was a very important guest waiting to meet him, it was too late. Alcohol seemed to have taken its toll.

And thus, the tycoon flew out of the country a very disappointed man! How many of such investment opportunities did the country miss during Mr. Lungu’s tenure? Instead of spending time working, Lungu was busy wining and dining in State house with questionable individuals.

As our beloved President HH settles into State House, it’s our only hope and prayer that sanity will return to our nation in all aspects of our lives, once and for all.

51 COMMENTS

  1. Don’t insult the hand that fed you.
    You are so insolent. Wait you see how joking looks like because someone was already looking like Mr. BEAN at inauguration.
    What a waste of LT post space. What a sham of an article.
    ECL our beloved president is not in office, roll your sleeves and get over it quick quick. Shaaa! Kupusa bati! What non.sense!

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  2. ECL is gone! State House appointments are always terrible. Why do investors have to see the president? Can’t they see ZDA or Ministry of Commerce Officials?

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  3. The second billionaire mentioned was Dangote. Lungu, especially at the beginning, was a non functional drunk who couldn’tmake it to meetings. He got better, at least at being a functional alcoholic, later on in his presidency. I wonder how many investors just said no thanks to Zambia because it meant working with such incompetence and unpredictability.

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  4. Nice and unsurprising article. I’m sure many more will do the rounds in the near future. Even my wife has a story of Edgar China Lungu coming to the casino while totally plastered, while he was in office! Photographic evidence available!

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  5. Nice and unsurprising article. I’m sure many more will do the rounds in the near future. Even my wife has a story of the president coming to the casino not exactly fit for duty, while he was in office! Photographic evidence available!

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  6. Those were the wasted Lazy Lungu years…you can not take a drunk from Chawama put him in State House and expect him to work like Sam Walton (founder of Walmart). Lungu was the right candidate for the corrupt elite easy to control and manipulate hence all that news of arms cargo ships being ceased sailing under our flag, Sata should have known better but he didnt and it cost him his party that he struggled for which is now fragmentated.

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  7. What’s wrong with people? What’s this new upnd culture of insulting our leaders. Show some decency. ECL is our former president who deserves respect because of the office he held. Now you want to keep on attacking him? For what purpose? Then you stand on podiums and preach national unity!
    The man is gone, leave him alone. Let’s have some work done now. Electioneering is over. Looks like you don’t know what to do now that you’re in power. So you keep on attacking a defeated man and politicking. Start working, we are watching. Mwakangiwa kudala?

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  8. You are a sadist. You think HH is the one who will be allowing people to visit him anyhow even if its difficulty to do so. Uncle Tony and your group came for business and entreprenuership , what did that had to do with ECL? If he gets kick backs from these investors you will be the first one to call him corrupt. Next time Uncle Tony comes take him to Mkushi, Chibombo, Sinazeze, Dundumwezi, Chembe, Mununga etc to help the youths who need his mentorship extremly than state house to drink coffee and wine.

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  9. Am glad this drunk of a president is gone. I vividly remember him answering a question just when he was elected, on his relationship with Guy Scott & he answered “I don’t drink with him”. Which implied GS was not his friend.

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  10. That’s why I will always maintain that the people who supported and still support Lungu are not mentally OK.

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  11. @number three, you are right. There has never been any need for any investors to meet the President, or indeed the cabinet members. We have functional agencies that any investor will need to use.
    We have ZDA, PACRA and indeed ZRA. Again, no need for any of them to be sent to State House, this gives an illusion of corruption, even when there may be non.
    With that being said, it is impudent of a Head of State to ignore scheduled meetings, and even worse for him to make visitors wait and then outrightly refuse to meet them.
    Such was the legacy of Lungu, to prefer being surrounded by people like Chomba Kaoma in State House and being an enemy of academics.

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  12. So he the billionaire just wanted to introduce you to the president and because you couldn’t meet him he was ‘a joke of a president” wow! That standard. HH will meet everyone who shows up at the gate of state house especially if there is some muzungu of some sort…is that it? Have respect for the office.

    HH defeated Lungu and its time to govern. HH is the president. Lungu was defeated by 1million votes. Leave him alone. Countrymen, let’s move FORWARD. Leave Lungu alone. Is it that you want to distract the masses with this? Lungu this, Lungu that all day long. Please, it’s becoming boring.

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  13. What’s the use of insulting a former head of state who is no longer in power? Allow ECL to rest. He did his part.

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  14. With your childish colonised attitude, it’s good President Lungu refused to see you. Margaret Mwanakatwe’s fake accent?? You will never achieve half of what that woman has achieved, ka Kaping’a. In Africa, our culture centres on respect. Peddling adopted western cultures to us won’t work-umuchinshi first.

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  15. Any wonder how Freedom Sikazwe, Japhen Mwakalombe, Bowman Lusambo and Stephen Kampyongo could be ministers. I am still clutching my head, failing to believe that those could have been our leaders

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  16. UPND …..people have already made up their minds for 2026…..they’ve realized it was a big mistake and continue insulting the former head of state and you will see even 2026 might be a bridge too far…..Lungu this Lungu that……when you suppose to be creating employment for the youths….

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  17. Nkani ya mu Kachasu had it that some guys used to sell appointments for as much as 50pin per individual to meet His Excellence. He traveled to Kopala many times but I never heard Chambers of Commerce and Industry included on his program. It was always bus loads of cadres going to the Presidential Lodge

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  18. Lungu was useless and dull, the ido!t reduced the presidency to nothing… the chap wasn’t thinking using the ka little brain he had, he chose to use the yellow teeth for thinking, the result was always a disaster

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  19. If a ‘multi-billionaire’ arrives at the President’s door for a meeting then he should see him, especially if the country’s economy is as bad as Zambia’s – of that there is no question.

    A huge percentage of people are struggling to survive in Zambia and if a multi-national heavyweight arrives it is every Zambians duty to encourage the guy to invest heavily, not ignore him so that he visits another country and invests there.

    There are some very naive comments on here from people who clearly have zero knowledge of investment or economics

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  20. @ Pathetic Fooools
    Start talking about your so called President HH….still talking about Lungu….hahahaha where is the Cabinet …where are jobs for the youths kikikikiki now Zambia has a big makaka as a President. ….a SELLOUT….mwanya muzachiona

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  21. This is so low and unnecessary Mr writer. If you have nothing to write about, rather close your device. Presidents meet their fellow Presidents who can come with a delegation of investors. Don’t expect every Jim and Jack to be entertained just because he/she’s a billionaire. If he or she wants to invest in the country there are relevant ministries to deal with that. This is why you keep saying the President is corrupt because you expect them to be exposed to so called corrupt investors. Start showing us what’s in plan HH and UPND. Lungu is out, leave him alone. Don’t think dununa reverse when you campaigned on forward.

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  22. The story makes sad reading indeed and is an indictment of the former squatter at plot one. However, i do not like the ‘fake British accent’ issue. There is NO such thing as a real British accent. The British themselves know that. Sometimes they ask each other, ‘Where are you from? You sound Cockney.’ Those who speak with a ‘plum in the mouth’ tend to be the ‘posh’ ones, but it doesn’t matter anymore because not even the Queen speaks thus any longer. As long as the grammar is correct and the communication is achieved, it doesn’t matter how a person speaks and let us never disparage people on the basis of their accents.

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  23. #14  Chiza Chirwa
     August 27, 2021 At 8:19 am

    “@number three, you are right. There has never been any need for any investors to meet the President, or indeed the cabinet members. We have functional agencies that any investor will need to use.
    We have ZDA, PACRA and indeed ZRA. Again, no need for any of them to be sent to …….”

    What functional agencies ??

    None of them worked without lungu farting…..from the police, DEC , ACC , the lot of them…..

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  24. 1. How Sad. The author boasts about meeting Tony Elumelu, a person who worked in the banking industry and helped the Late General Abacha transfer $5 Billion out of Nigeria. Tony Elumelu is among the top corrupt businessmen in Nigeria. He has been asked time after time how he made money so fast, and has failed to explain himself.

    Just because Tony Elumelu set up Philanthropy Projects for good causes, from the money he stole, does not make him a good investor. He stole money meant for the poor in Nigeria. Or the The Italian Mafioso who kill people for money and donate to the Catholic Church, can be viewed as good people.

    Two top American universities had to withdraw awarding Tony Elumelu Honorary Doctorate Titles because of his bad deeds.

  25. 2. General Abacha got to power through a Military Coup and stole $5 Billion. The current Nigerian President denounced the European Leaders for facilitating him deposit money in European Banks. He said:

    “DON’T CALL USE CORRUPT WHEN YOU MADE IT EASY FOR GENERAL ABACHA AND HIS MINIONS TO TRANSFER MONEY INTO EUROPE BANKS.

    Tony Elumelu was a top minion to General Abacha. Nigeria made a deal with Abacha’s children who have paid back $2.5 Billion to the Nigerian Government

  26. 3. To the author, are these the type of people you want to bring to the State House Desk before HH such as Tony Elumelu. It appears you never got something out of the proposed investment, which failed and now you are bitter and channelling your frustrations.

    And what does the author mean when he says “HH our beloved president”. HH has not even delivered anything. As of now, all Zambians problems are under HH’s shoulder. Three, Four and Five years from now, Zambia will gauge him.

    Listen to what Cornelius Mweetwa said: “ NO ONE IN THE UPND TOP ECHELON WILL BE PRESIDENT HAKAINDE HICHILEMA’S BOOTLICKER”.

    Sorry! this author “may” just be a is bootlicker !!

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  27. BLAH BLAH BLAH WHO CARES WHAT THIS CHAP SAYS
    LETS RATHER REJOICE THE TR000LL IM*P0 *STER HAS BEEN SILENCED
    IN DUBAI HE SAID
    IS THERE A SHANTY CALLED DUBAI IN ZAMBIA

  28. #31  INDEPENDENT OBSERVER 
    August 27, 2021 At 1:44 pm

    “..1. How Sad. The author boasts about meeting Tony Elumelu, a person who worked in the banking industry and helped the Late General Abacha transfer $5 Billion out of Nigeria. Tony Elumelu is among the top corrupt businessmen in Nigeria. He has been asked time after time how he made money so fast, and has failed to explain himself…….”

    Switzerland and much of the west dont ask where billioairs get their money , as long as they bring it to their countries……..

    How ironic, we have zambia begging for aid from the west while citizens of zambia want to question if an investors money is dirty or not ???, while the west where we are begging for aid don’t…….

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  29. No investor could meet lungu until he first deposited $50000 and then Amos chanda would facilitate the meeting. This was common knowledge. In fact it’s the same money for appointment deals that got Amos removed because he decided to pilfer more than his share and not because of the ratsa deal.

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  30. I disagree with this article in a few areas. Why should a businessman visiting Zambia see our president. Bill Gates visists Europe regularly. He never meets political leaders in Europe. He’s a businessperson while his hosts are politicians. What do they hv in common?

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  31. #37  Nemwine
     August 27, 2021 At 4:36 pm

    “I disagree with this article in a few areas. Why should a businessman visiting Zambia see our president. Bill Gates visists Europe regularly. He never meets political leaders in Europe. He’s a businessperson while his hosts are politicians…….”

    Wrong, western leaders are always meeting and begging billionair forigners to bring their billions to their countries…….

  32. There are many of us that live outside Lusaka and Zambia. Those of you privy to the goings-on in Lungu’s and PF circles please help us know how our country was mis-ruled.
    Revealing the bad that occurred is not disrespect to those people. They deserve being exposed.

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  33. Ecclesiastes 10:15-19
    New Living Translation
    15 Fools are so exhausted by a little work
    that they can’t even find their way home.

    16 What sorrow for the land ruled by a servant,[a]
    the land whose leaders feast in the morning.
    17 Happy is the land whose king is a noble leader
    and whose leaders feast at the proper time
    to gain strength for their work, not to get drunk.

    18 Laziness leads to a sagging roof;
    idleness leads to a leaky house.

    19 A party gives laughter,
    wine gives happiness,
    and money gives everything!

  34. cont…

    The Obama Administration and the European Union changed the game by forcing Switzerland to open the door for Investigators to request info if suspicions are raised. That’s why most crooks closed accounts in Swiss Banks and started hiding their money in Panama. Not only for tax avoidance but to completely hide money.

    Obama & European Union, did this because the money that was given to developing nations was finding itself in Swiss Private Accounts

    What good does do… for Tony Elumelu from Nigeria to steal money meant for the poor only for him to invest it in Zambia. Is this not the same thing we are asking all our presidents to keep their hands off from national wealth for personal gains. PLEASE LETS REASON. !!!

  35. Cont… The Obama Administration and the European Union changed the game by forcing Switzerland to open the door for Investigators to request info if suspicions are raised. That’s why most crooks closed accounts in Swiss Banks and started hiding their money in Panama. Not only for tax avoidance but to hide money.

    Obama & European Union, did this because the money that was given to developing nations was finding itself in Swiss Private Accounts
    UK & USA is constantly blocking Russians & Chinese Billionaires who are crooks from setting up companies in the West. Some have been given sanctions.

  36. cont..
    What good does it do for Tony Elumelu from Nigeria to steal money meant for the poor, only for him to make investments in Zambia. Is this not what we asking all our presidents to keep off their hands from national wealth, for personal gains. PLEASE LETS REASON

  37. #39  INDEPENDENT OBSERVER
     August 27, 2021 At 6:05 pm

    The pressure the swiz banks are facing have very little to do with crooks hiding money there………

    more to do with Israeli demands to identify and return nazi loot , looted from Jewish victims……and was part of a compromise to Israel for the planned peace talks with the Palestinians…….

    Russian and other Arab billionairs with questionable records are welcome investors in the west…..

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  38. Spaka @ 46

    Thats not true. Lets debate based on facts not illusions and assumption. It has nothing to do with Israel. Its just a new Global Financial World Order which was started by the Obama Administration championed by Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State

  39. #48  INDEPENDENT OBSERVER 
    August 27, 2021 At 11:57 pm

    “Spaka @ 46

    Thats not true. Lets debate based on facts not illusions and assumption. It has nothing to do with Israel. Its just a new Global Financial World Order which was started by the Obama Administration championed by Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State…”

    My facts are very true , you are dillussional to think the west would refuse billions being invested in their countries based on source of income……..as long as it is not terror related against the west , it is good money……and if it is terror related according to some lobby groups , it is kept , not returned…..

  40. To think there is a global financial oder started by Obama based on morals or integrity is a big fallacy……..

    There is no global money order , as long as it is not drug or terror money , you can invest in the west……or if the owners can prove it is stolen money…..

    The west would not want to open that tin of worms of classifying money anything other than terror or drug money….other wise most western capitals would be paying restitutions for many years…..

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