CiSCA Chairperson Bishop John Mambo says it’s time for President Edgar Lungu and UPND leader Hakainde Hichilema to meet ‘eye to eye’ and have the dialogue which has been pending for a long time.

And St Joseph Parish Priest Father Gabriel Mwanamwalye has observed that Zambia can only be united when its leaders are united.

Last week on Thursday during the former Chimbamilonga MMD member of parliament Brian Sikazwe’s requiem service, UPND leader Hakainde Hichilema gave Finance Minister Felix Mutati a hearty embrace and later on went to greet Justice Minister Given Lubinda and other government officials; in a gesture of peace and unity.

And in an interview with News Diggers! bishop Mambo observed that the gesture was in good faith and showed maturity in politics.

“That’s good faith and it also it shows maturity in politics. Politicians are not from the same family, they are not of the same surname, but they have one common goal [which is] to serve the people of the given country or the given nation. So when we bury our differences, that shows that we are growing. Just like in our churches, you can’t say that if I meet a catholic, who are a majority in terms of numbers, I shouldn’t greet them. If I meet I Muslim, I shouldn’t greet them. In fact that should have been done long time ago that when you meet, you don’t differ because of politics because you play different roles. Wwe should see more of that where politicians including us the nation, should put aside the differences. In this country we are all one and we must put Zambia first. So that was a very good gesture,” he said.

Bishop Mambo said President Lungu and HH should meet eye to eye and have the pending dialogue.

“It’s biblical that you should ‘love your enemies and pray for them’. Zambia being a christian nation we don’t see why President Lungu and HH cannot meet eye to eye and also to bring about dialogue. Whether they like it or not, the more they delay, we are approaching 2021 tomorrow, this country will still have the tension which is man made. There is need for them to have dialogue because it has been pending for a long time,” he said.

And Father Mwanamwalye observed that dialogue would only be possible if HH recognised Lungu as republican President.

“Dialogue is a two way process. Dialogue works out when you recognise the position of another person. At the moment it will be very good for HH to accept that there is somebody in State House who is the President. At the same time the President must also look at HH to say that he is also a leader of a political party. Dialogue is only going to take place if there is mutual respect. According to Martin Buber the father of dialogue, dialogue can only work out if people respect each other. Regardless of the position, you just have to respect each other. Without respecting the other person you can’t have dialogue,” said Mwanamwalye.

“Its good that HH, Felix Mutati and other government officials embraced each other. This is a good sign and it is healthy for our country. We must make sure that we pursue this same direction, and that one day President Edgar Lungu and Mr Hakainde Hichilema will extend their hand and sit down and discuss. They are leaders of the country and we need leaders to be united so that even citizens will become united. If leaders are always divided then even the people will be divided. Unity is needed and dialogue is needed at the same time.”