People’s Alliance for Change leader Andyford Banda says he does not attend government events because they all feel like a PF camp.

Explaining why he did not attend Independence Day celebrations in an interview, Banda complained that government events did not have a national appeal.

“Yesterday was independence and there is need for people to celebrate independence day. There is a history that we need to appreciate about the fight that our forefathers got into and eventually became victorious. The objective of the independence struggle was to ensure that we move from colonial rule to our own sovereign rule as a country and resources managed by the Zambian people themselves. That history is something that needs to be celebrated because no matter how bad the situation is right now, that cannot be changed. Independence must not be attached to the PF government. Independence is a national issue,” Banda said.

“It is about the pride we have that we are no longer under colonialism. However, as PAC we are not attending national events organized by the government because they do not symbolize a national character. You will find that when you go to such events it feels like a PF camp. So until that time when every person will be embraced as a Zambian on national events and not as a politician from another political party, is when we shall consider to start attending such events. It is not that we are shunning the celebration itself, we are shunning the gathering and not the celebration. The celebration is still worth celebrating but any gathering organized by the government is not worth it.”

And commenting on veteran politician Vernon Mwaanga’s remarks that well known freedom fighters like him were never invited to State House for independence functions, Banda said it was only logical to honour those who were involved in the struggle.

“Those that did not participate in the struggle, its logical that they should not have been honoured. They should have honoured people who were actually involved. You know there is a difference between being a Zambian who has contributed so much and being a freedom fighter. So independence is actually about the freedom fighters and the independence struggle and those that contributed to the struggle in whatever way possible must be honoured instead of just honouring people for the sake of just putting badges on their chest,” said Banda.