In this audio, Lands Minister Jean Kapata says she failed to reason with Chief Kaindu of the Kaonde speaking people in Mumbwa, Central province over his alleged illegal sale of land in the chiefdom because he was too drunk for a sober discussion.

Reacting to earlier threats by Chief Kaindu and the Kaindu Natural Resources Trust that they would take legal action against her and the Times of Zambia for accusing the traditional leader of illegally selling land in his chiefdom, Kapata told News Diggers! in an interview that the traditional leader was a dreamer.

The minister said she had travelled to visit Chief Kaindu to verify reports that he was selling land illegally, but found the traditional too drunk for a sober discussion.

Take a listen:

“We went to verify, how could I know that the chief has sold land? I don’t know, let him go to court because first of all, I went there with the Minister of Chiefs and Traditional Affairs, and the Minister for Central province to verify that the chief was selling land , it was coming, we were getting this news from you the journalists, it was headlines everyday in the papers where the journalists were saying that the chief has even sold his palace. Is it Jean Kapata who said that? No! I went there to verify and when we went there, we found the chief was too drunk to reason. So we didn’t do anything and we left,” said Kapata.

“So am not anywhere in the picture, these are allegations that were coming through the media. He is a dreamer, that’s all. We have been reading about his chiefdom and when we went, we went there to verify, to find out whether he had really sold his palace. But we found him very very, extremely drunk and we could not reason with him. As you heard recently that his subjects were very worried, some two vehicles had picked him. You didn’t read where it was saying the chief was abducted? And it went on to say that they took him because they wanted to make him drunk so that he could sign papers. So is it Jean Kapata who is making him to sign those papers?”

In May 2017, Chief Kaindu issued a statement through the chairperson for the Kaindu Royal Establishment, Robert Chikumbi Shibuyunji that he felt insulted by Kapata and the Times of Zambia newspaper for accusing him of illegally selling land in his chiefdom.

“HIS Royal Highness Chief Kaindu and Kaindu Natural Resources Trust (KNRT) are greatly aggrieved by a press report and statement published in Sunday Times of 21st May 2017 entitled ‘His Royal Greediness’ and the condemning of His Royal Highness by Honorable Minister of Lands Honorable Jean Kapata and the Zambia Land Alliance Executive Director Eugen Kabilika. His Royal Highness Chief Kaindu and KNRT demand for an apology from both the Times of Zambia and the Minister of Lands, failure to which, legal action will be taken. The dual further demands that in the manner that the statement was published, so should the apology be published,” read the KNRT statement.

“KNRT and his Royal Highness Chief Kaindu consider the front page stories of Sunday 21st May 2017, and Monday 22nd May 2017 to be insults. The statement by the Minister of Lands and the Executive Director at ZLA are also a clear indication that respect for the Royal Highnesses and traditional leaders by those holding higher offices in Zambia is slowly degenerating. It is inconceivable that Times of Zambia and Honorable Minister in a sensitive Ministry like the Ministry of lands would respectively write and speak carelessly.”