GARY Nkombo says he will remember President Edgar Lungu as a weak leader who led a group of violent followers.

Debating the President’s speech in Parliament on Tuesday, Nkombo, who is Mazabuka Central UPND member of parliament, said there was nothing good to remember President Lungu for.

“Here is how we want to remember the President some of us; as somebody whose leadership is weak but leading very violent people. Because I don’t mince my words, I’ll say my view of the man who delivered the speech; a weak person leading a violent group of people,” he said as some PF members shouted ‘question!’ “And why do I say so? Mr Speaker, there’s no law in this country. The justice system is broken down in this country. There’s a dual justice system where if you are a PF cadre, you are stronger than the police, an institution that is supposed to maintain law and order. This is the only country where a President remains mute when a political cadre goes to beat the police at the Central Police [Station] in Lusaka; he’s mute.”

Nkombo explained further about President Lungu’s weak leadership.

“This is the only country where a President has a minister who is going around doing pornography, walking around naked and he’s quiet. That is the definition of the breakdown of rule of law. And yet, the violent group that follows him will be the first ones to usher him into being a demagogue,” Nkombo said. “Why do I say so, Mr Speaker? Demagogue is a political leader who seeks support by the desires of populist prejudices. This is the only government, Mr Speaker, where the minister responsible for information must say we are waiting for the public to speak for us to know whether we are going to have a prima facie case on an individual. Shame!”

He further gave a catalogue of things for which President Lungu’s administration would be remembered.

“Mr Speaker, this government will be remembered for the following things: theft of [social] cash transfer, theft of Mukula (rosewood), illegal imports. Mr Speaker, poverty and hunger is visible even in the rural areas where they claim to be strong. The sight you see in Northern Province, Mr Speaker, is poverty,” Nkombo said. “They have subjected people of the North with a phenomenon called tantameni, meaning stand in a queue tulyemo (we benefit). This is institutionalised corruption. He’ll be remembered as the only President who protects ministers. They go to court where they’re charged with criminal offences and they go back to the office and everybody is saying yes sir, yes sir. In Dr Kaunda’s time, you are found wanting; whether you are on excessive beer drinking spree or on a pornographic movie, you’ll be sent home. This is the only President who entertains things that are below expectations of one.”

Nkombo, however, said President Lungu’s speech was a farewell message to the people.

He said there was nothing inspiring, hence no need for the Head of State to claim that he had delivered on his promises.

“I think the fairest way to treat the President’s speech is that he is entitled to his feelings. But that is about all, he has no entitlement to our feelings and how we see things ourselves. Infrastructure development, Mr Speaker; I just traveled on the Kasama road not so long ago; there’s no road there, that is a fact,” said Nkombo. “Unless those who travel by air, there’s no road; going to Nakonde, going to Mpulungu, there’s no road. You don’t go in there and come out with a straight set of tyres, they’ll be gone because there are craters on that road. So, what is the President priding himself about infrastructure development? Zero. The consolation is, I look at his speech as one of those farewell, goodbyes, because according to the Constitution I’ve read he’s not even eligible to stand next year.”


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