President Hakainde Hichilema has thanked the people of Eastern Province for giving the United Party for National Development (UPND ) 49 percent of the votes to in the August 12 general elections.
Addressing the people who welcomed him at the airport in Chipata this morning, President Hichilema said the people of Eastern Province chose to unite the country in the way they voted.
“Nifuna kuonga zikomo, taonga chomene (I want to thank you, thank you very much) for what you did. You chose to unite the country. You the wise people of this province voted for this President,” said President Hichilema who switched between speaking Nyanja and English in his address in short address.
The President said that his heart was filled with gratitude and humbleness and he seeking a way to reward the people of Eastern for giving him election victory.
He mentioned that his campaign while in opposition was restricted and most often he was tear gassed, but despite all that the people in the Eastern Province, who have in the past not moved with political change, chose to move forward with the rest of the country.
“I used to laugh at you that you always remain, but this time you chose to move with change. If we got so many votes here where we were not allowed to campaign, what more if we had campaigned here freely? ” President Hichilema said, as the people cheered Bally! Bally!
And President Hichilema has promised that once the UPND budget comes into effect in January, more money will be moved into constituencies from Lusaka.
He announced that the observation and planning has now been done and his government is ready to go forward to better the life of the people of Zambia.
The President also thanked the people for welcoming at the airport, saying he was happy to be in Chipata in a different capacity.
He reminisced that a few months ago he was blocked not to enter the City of Chipata and was tear gassed that he could not even have a good view of the beautiful hills of the City.
“There is peace here, no violence. This is the way the country should be run. It feels good to look at those beautiful hills, I couldn’t see then because there was teargas all over,” President Hichilema said.
He said the country must from now on work in a manner that demonstrates love for one each other and work in a way that demonstrates equity for the benefit of everyone.
The President who arrived around 10.00 hours at Chipata airport in company of UPND senior member William Banda was welcomed by Eastern Province Minister Peter Phiri and acting Permanent Secretary Royd Tembo.
The President who is in the Eastern Province for a one visit has since flown to Petauke where he is expected to address a series of meetings in drumming support for the UPND parliamentary candidate in the Kaumbwe parliamentary election.
He is also expected to extend his tour to Lusangazi where there is also council chairperson election.
The two elections did not take place on August 12 for Kaumbwe constituency and Lusangazi council because of the death of the aspiring candidates.