The Opposition Patriotic Front (PF) Vice President Given Lubinda, has scoffed at what he described as President Hakainde Hichilema´s desperate attempt to musk his inertia on economic development by blaming the former ruling party on how much it borrowed to develop Zambia.
reacting to a statement the government issued to Bloomberg regarding the extent of the Zambian debt on 21st October which he said needed clarification to the international world and the locals too, Mr. Lubinda said that the statement issued by Mr. Hichilema´s government provided nothing new about the debt stock that stands at about US$13 billion and yet the Hichilema government made it appear as if the debt was reckless.
“Mr. Hichilema as a President of Zambia needs to be reminded yet again that the debt or the money we borrowed went into good use and Mr Hichilema must be grateful about it and not be glib, as the investment of the debt gives him a head start,” said Mr. Lubinda.
Mr. Lubinda said that the PF government under President Lungu borrowed money for the following, among many others, to build 8 public universities in various provinces, to build 650 health posts (490 done to date) that are reducing mortality and maternal deaths in Zambia today, to build 14, 000 class rooms, to build 8000 kms of roads around the country in order to make communication and business efficiency, to erect communication towers which actually enabled Mr HH to communicate with the youth and win him a one-term election, to increase electricity generation capacity and supply from a meagre 1,700 MW in 2011 when we took over from MMD to 3250 MW when we left office in August 2021, to increase agriculture capacity through programs such as FSIP in order to enhance food security, to build international airports that make Zambia a hub for regional and continental trade
Mr. Lubinda further said that Zambia now has three medical universities because of the PF which built specialist and ultra-modern general hospitals in districts that hitherto did not have rural health centers and build maize sheds across the country and ended the perennial wastage of crops due to rain, which has happened this year after 10 years.
Mr. Lubinda said President Hichilema should be grateful that he is starting off on a sound footing of good infrastructure which he must build on instead of crying every day as though he is still in the opposition.
“We borrowed for production, we did not borrow for consumption and Mr. Hichilema must stop trying to get local and international pity via a bad debt campaign, he is looking cheap and desperate and yet his problems are just beginning,” said Mr. Lubinda.
The PF VP said, “whether he (Hichilema) likes it or not, we are bouncing back in the office in 2026 because Mr. Hichilema and his people will not live up to their “over-promising”. We are coming back and we will win, just watch this space.”
Mr. Lubinda urged President Hichilema to “Stop blaming and start working.” adding that farmers are waiting for 12 bags of fertilizer today and at the price of K250 and wondered where Mr Hichilema is with the 2020 to 2021 bumper harvest rotting the 2.8 million still waiting on him regarding his numerous campaign promises.
“It is time for him to show them what he can do. Need he be reminded that the people did not vote for him to use state resources and state authority to demonize the previous government, they voted for him because he made them believe that he had a better agenda than the other parties for Zambia. The sooner he got down to delivering on his promises the better,” he concluded.