President Edgar Lungu has asked those with intentions of succeeding him to support him first so that he can raise them to his level, instead of peddling lies and trying to destroy the ruling party.
Speaking at Simon Mwansa Kapwepwe International Airport in Ndola where he went to watch the Zambia Vs Camroon game yesterday, President Lungu told residents that those who thought were clever than him in the party would never make it to the presidency.
“I want to emphasise that the Copperbelt is the heart and brain for the Copperbelt (Zambia). And you are lucky if you belong here, just work your way to the top. Probably when I’m tired or retired you could be the next President,” President Lungu said.
“They should just wait for you people to put them where I am. But if you want everybody to know that you are very clever, you will never make it; because that is not how I became President, that is not how Mr Sata became president, that is not how Rupiah Banda became president and that is not how Levy Mwanawasa became president. They all became Presidents because they carried people along with them.”
He said some people who were planning to succeed him lacked quality leadership because they were belittling him and politicking on none-issues.
“‘Finshi winganjeba iwe tawakwata indalama? Finshi winganjeba iwe moneni ukonda. Finshi winganjeba moneni ukwipipa (what can you tell me, you don’t have money; what can you tell me, look at how thin you are; what can you tell, look at how short you are) . That is not how you behave in leadership. Respect people and they will respect you. I’m saying this because I am a product of this gathering,” he said.
“But I can see that there are people who think that because they talk loudest, people will listen. Ala batila, umutima nga taumfwile, uleposafye inshita (If your heart can’t hear you, you are wasting time). The people of Zambia are watching, and me I am also listening; and sometimes ndoleshafye kuntanshi nalabako nokulabako (I just look forward and ignore).”
He said people on the Copperbelt were being fed lies.
“There is a saying; unfortunately, I speak much more Bemba more than I speak my own language (refers to another Bemba proverb)… I know what is happening on the Copperbelt, I know who is feeding people with false information, and I know how I can clump on them. But you see, some people want to tell lies so that nga nafulwa (when I get angry) they come at my level. In short what I’m saying is that, promote the highest tree, that it lifts you to become at the same level,” President Lungu said.
“At my level if you lie about me, nakwasuka ninshi ndekusumbula (if I answer you, i will exalt you). You will look at me and say yes, moneni fishinka ifyo twalemucita ulya (look, we were saying the truth about him). Kuli abantu bamo nabalwala (some people are suffering from) verbal diarrhoea. Akulaunfwa ichintu nangu tachishibe ukuya mukusabaila (they hear something they don’t understand, but they go and spread lies). Nga wamwipwusha ati ‘awe naumfwilefye (when you ask him, he says I also just heard). Tuba Tuba, they call it in Congo. Verbal diarrhoea naitwikata sana. They will tell you about me, me I am this me I am that, Lungu this Lungu that, tacakatwafwe iyo. Tefyo tulefwaya (that’s not what we want) mu Zambia, echo tulefwaya ukubabombela ngatwafumapo (that’s why we want to work before we leave). Thats what the people want. They are not interested in who has got a fat belly, a soft belly, what what. Who has got a big head a small head. People are not interested in that because there is no issue!”
He warned detractors from assuming that they were more popular than him.
“They are trying to alarm the nation. I want to make this very clear because I have seen some people are buying into falsehoods. They want to alarm the nation. When you see a gathering of people, don’t think they are all with you. Don’t think they cheering you, probably they are jeering you,” said President Lungu
“So mwilapokafye ifyabufi ifyabufi (don’t just receive lies). Just listen to the truth. Icine cilayeba (the truth speaks for itself). I don’t have to say how we have done well. Ifwe ba PF elyo ba Sata bafwile (us in PF, when Sata died, we went to Kabwe, twaliya bonse mwaliya sala ine (we went to Kabwe and you chose me). Twalikumene fyapwa, mwasala ine. Today other political parties, how many of them have that kind of democracy? None. Wapangafe party (you just form a party) and say I am a President, kabiye naiwe baye kupime (go to the convention so that people can examine you).”