Monday, June 17, 2024

Former President Edgar Lungu and I talk. But what is said publicly is something else – President Hakainde Hichilema

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President Hakainde Hichilema has indicated that he and former president Edgar Lungu talk but what is said to the public is different, saying “there were crimes that were committed before and conversations took place on how to treat those issues within the law.”

Addressing the media at State House, President Hichilema said he was available to talk to Lungu saying “I don’t want to reveal many things here because I am responsible.”

“My colleague and I talk, unbeknownst to you. But what is said in public is a different matter. Someone is not telling the truth. There were crimes that were committed before and conversations took place how to treat those issues within the law. I advise let’s treat this matter within the law. But citizens are not aware. Then someone goes on a platform and says there is no communication. Now the day I reveal, if it’s necessary you will be shocked,” President Hichilema said. “We must repent. Sometimes we must repent so that society becomes normal. I think the danger and the pain that is there is that there is no abnormalities. There are no pangas, no guns. That is making some people miss access to cash, illegal cash. I can tell you that I will put my foot down. I think we can close this press conference. We have said enough.”

President Hichilema inferred that president Lungu could not be in retirement and remain in politics at the same time, describing that as offending the law.

He said one could not continue receiving benefits tied to them when conditions stipulated that they first had to retire from politics to enjoy those benefits, and dismissed claims he was harassing Lungu at it was Lungu who harassed him during his time in power.

President Hichilema wondered if Lungu would even be jogging on public roads if he was being harassed, saying he would not have been spared doing the same during his opposition times.

“Between my colleague ECL and HH who harassed who? Peacefully he is living there. The police are living there,” he said, adding that even the robbery which happened at the former president’s residence was found to have been committed by his own PF cadres.

Further, the President argued that it was Lungu who instructed against him flying out of Chipata during the 2021 general elections, alongside other threats to arrest the then opposition leader so that he could be placed in custody indefinitely.

He wondered why insults were being directed towards him as if he is the one who received $400,000 from former first lady Esther Lungu.

Addressing some economic challenges, President Hichilema pointed to the graph which showed economic dips and upswings associated with administrations that have led Zambia since independence, and highlighting some of the initiatives he had taken to stabilise the economy anchored on addressing the debt problem at multilateral level were being pushed by China and France, accusing the opposition of trying to polarise the process that his administration was anti-China.

He also boasted about being the only president that has gone about interacting freely with students as he did at UNZA and CBU, and that with the re-introduction of meal allowances for the students he has managed to chase away sugar daddies as the female students simply had no option in the past.

He admitted about the challenges in the health sector in terms of drugs and other supplies and hermorhaging drugs to private clinics and urged the community to report suspected pilferage.

On the ongoing problems at the critical mines of Mopani and KCM, the President did not pronounce anything new, but repeated the same talking points that his government had taken decisions to address the matter outside court, amid allegations of attempting to award the running of mines to firms which supported the UPND and also that Dolika Banda resigned as board chairperson from ZCCM-IH due to excessive self-seeking interference from State House.

He also justified the maize floor price of K280 from K180 saying the traders were benefiting more that the producers of the crop, despite fears this will escalate the price of mealie meal in the country.

The President also promised compound D fertilizer will be purchased from local producers who create value in the country country and that inputs in form of FISP will be distributed on time against the chaos and late delivery that marked the programme the last farming season.

But asked on the fact that producers of commodities like soya beans will be exploited by unscrupulous buyers owing to the fact that the Food Reserve Agency will only be buying maize, the President said FRA could not buy everything as one of the jobs for the government was to work with the private sector.

He boasted about the NAPSA partial withdraws and other initiatives to boost cash liquidity in the country while challenging those in the opposition to come up with alternative programmes as opposed to what he described as insults.

Asked if he had any home grown solution to the debt problem as opposed to pinning all the hopes on the IMF deal, President Hichilema said the PF administration which got Zambia in the debt problem did not have any home grown solution and that is why they defaulted on loan repayments in 2020.

Addressing the growing discontentment in the population on the high cost of living and other problems, President Hichilema claimed that that was on account of the damage done in the last 10 years “but today Zambians want to see the fruit in one year eight months.”

27 COMMENTS

  1. Harassment can be in many forms. So the fact that he’s jogging doesn’t mean he’s not being harassed. A wife would be driving and shopping everyday but you wouldn’t know her tortures. Do you want Lungu to write to you that he’s no longer in politics.
    Stop torturing your mind.

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  2. I said it that nothing of importance of improving the livelihood of Zambians will come out of this press conference other than arrogance and showing power but day of reckoning is coming

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  3. Big liar. I spend time with our father ecl and you have never I repeat never spoken to him since the death of RB. Fuseke! 2026 you are out

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  4. He refers to the past to contextualise current efforts and as a point of reference in answer to PF claims that we were better off during PF.

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  5. Deja Vu, Lungu did write that he is no longer in active politics but then his lieutenants in PF (Bowman and others) started saying he was still heading PF. So yes, Lungu does need to either clarify or behave in keeping with his resignation letter.

  6. Waste of space!!That press was a hogwash. He is too arrogant to answer questions. The earlier he realized that he has lost ground the better for his leadership. His ministers know that the man has absolutely failed. But they have no option but to continue kissing his a$$.

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  7. 1. Like we keep stating the whole truth. HH has been held on the throat & trapped by these Indian Bandits. HH waffled and failed to update the nation on the mining saga, particularly KCM & Mopani. He also completely failed to explain how we ended up having medical drug shortages. Agriculture or fertilizer issue – was another failure when surely Zambia is about to experience Food Security early next year. This President is taking Zambians for suckers and he is very arrogant.

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  8. This is better reporting by LT…………Well done.

    Things are improving……….

    As for lungu , he should repent and count himself lucky to be yet locked up………..

    Here is a man who even banned his successor from attending KKs funeral……….

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    • #Spaka… even your memory has started to tell lies….they were together greeting each other using elbows because of the COVID

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    • Look every body how dull this PF cader is………

      He is the only one who saw HH attend KKs funeral……..while everyone one else knows he was banned.

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  9. Ati people call me a lecturer. Unfortunately you do not have the knowledge to lecture anyone sir.

    Maybe a Privatization Teacher

    All we heard at that press briefing was me, me ,me and pwee pwee pwee.

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  10. 2H when you forgive, you have to move on. The fact that you keep bringing up your campaign issues means you have not forgiven but instead looking for sympathy. People will judge your actions and not your words.

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  11. So when you two meet, what do you talk about? Brebner Changala met him and we saw how they shared the dinning table as they eat meals together. Give evidence of you talking, meetup and agenda. Otherwise all this is cheap talk.

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  12. Sir we are not interested in talking than action in bringing down the economy,since UPND took power in government things changed be come bad due to the economy compare to previous governments, eating is the problem in most of communities country wide has at now compare to the previous year’s.
    We have entered first January 2023 with crisis [difficulties] in eating feeding the stomach it’s an emergency problem has at now it is the many issue for us local people,our father.

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  13. HH has bigger problems to talk about than Lungu jogging or is called a Lecturer. There issues of KCM, Mopani, high cost of living. The price of commodities has tripled from the time he took over office. These are the issues people want to hear about when he calls for the presser.

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    • That is true my dear friend since UPND party took office,we’re leaving in poverty has at now even the young born baby can see it & feel it today that things in UPND governmwnt under the leadership of his excellence HH things their bad.

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