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Opposition cry foul over Lungu branded school booksBy Zondiwe Mbewe on 20 Feb 2018
UPND deputy secretary general Gertrude Imenda says UPND will also donate school books branded with opposition leader Hakainde Hichilema’s face, if there will be no sanctions on President Edgar Lungu for the donation he made on Valentines Day to Kabwe pupils.
And NDC spokesperson Eric Chanda says he has instructed NDC members in Central Province to collect the branded exercise books and burn them, saying they were corrupting children with politics.
Commenting on the recent distribution of PF designed books branded with President Lungu’s face to various schools in Central Province, Imenda said in an interview with News diggers! Monday that PF had started a dirty campaign using learning institutions.
“That is campaigning and if there are no sanctions on Lungu, no penalty is taken against Edgar Lungu, then even us as UPND will will go ahead. We will consider the same because we will think that it’s allowed, its okay. But we want to hear condemnation first from other people so that he doesn’t go around doing that. Otherwise we shall also do the same. You think we don’t have branded things that we can give? We just feel its not the right time to do that,” said Imenda.
“They are using government resources for their own political campaigns meanwhile they cannot open UNZA and CBU. Some police officers had their monthly salaries cut because government has no money. But the PF, using government resources, are going around buying people, giving them money to join PF so that they can parade them and say ‘so many people are joining PF’. But they are wasting their time because Zambians have opened their eyes.”
And Chanda said the donation of branded books by the ruling party was a sign of desperation.
“Donating of branded books at any school, be it private or government, by the PF is simply pure desperation. A sign of early campaigns at the expense of developing the country. As NDC we want to warn PF to immediately stop distributing branded books in schools. Our warning as NDC is loud and clear. We have already burnt about 17 branded books so far just this morning,” he said.
Chanda said he had instructed NDC members to burn the branded books because they were corrupting children with politics.
“And as NDC we are instructing all NDC members in Central Province to collect those branded books and burn them. If anything I will instruct them to call me, I go and burn them in the face of the permanent secretary or any DEBS officer who is allowing these people to corrupt our children with politics. Its will be very disgraceful to the Head of State for people to start burning things which have his picture. What we are telling you ba PF is that these schools are not for PF, no. Children at these schools do not belong to you ba PF, they belong to every Zambian citizen. Therefore do not feed our intelligent children with politics by giving them branded books,” he said.
Chanda urged ECZ to ensure that no one donated branded materials in schools.
“Let me tell you ba PF, NDC has the capacity to make NDC branded books and put the head of our Consultant Honourable Dr Chishimba Kambwili. But we do not want to bring confusion in our schools. And ECZ, can you please sit down and see how you can amend the laws to ensure that no campaigns, no politics, goes into our schools. Let our children learn without political interference. If you PF, are genuine to donate books and are not campaigning, as NDC we want to challenge you to go and print books with the head of our founding President of this country, Dr Kenneth Kaunda. And Zambians will see that you are genuinely helping the children in schools,” said Chanda.
About Zondiwe Mbewe
Zondiwe is a vibrant young Zambian journalist who has interest in writing political and current affairs on issues which affect every Zambians. She draws inspiration from journalists who stand for what is right and are not afraid to tell and show the truth to the people.
Email: zondiwe [at] diggers [dot] news
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