Special Assistant to the President for Press and Public Relations Amos Chanda says President Edgar Lungu is happy that the dialogue process is finally on course because he has progressive views on the Constitution, Public Order Act and other issues which need reform.

Speaking to journalists at the Freedom Statue during Youth Day celebrations, Chanda said President Lungu’s commitment to dialogue was very strong.

“The President has given the strongest commitment ever since the dialogue process started that he wants genuine dialogue and he wants a quick, swift movement towards agreeing on all the fundamentals. I can tell you that the President wants an inclusive process otherwise, if I didn’t run the risk of preempting what his position is on many matters, I can tell you that the President clearly has progressive views on the constitution, on public order act, he has progressive views and he wants everyone to join him in his campaign to attack regionalism, to attack tribalism and all the illiberal values that undermine national cohesion so the President is encouraged and he is happy that Professor Gambari, the special envoy has set March 26 for the inauguration of the steering committee and he wants a genuine, faster movement on this score and he is confident that whoever it is that has been put in the steering committee will put national interests and national cohesion above partisan interests,” Chanda said.

And Chanda said President Lungu encouraged youths to utilize opportunities which arose from information technologies prudently.

“The President’s message is to encourage them to ensure that as much as possible, the diverse and incredible opportunities that information technologies have brought that they must maximize on that and tap into the various opportunities, both financial and human resource that the government is providing to advance their cause rather than engaging in things that can undermine them. The President is concerned too that the great promise that ICTs have brought, the digital platform can also cause incredible risk not just to individuals as youths but also to national security and other moral considerations. So whilst there is a great opportunity that exists in digital space, the President is issuing a clarion call that the youths must as much as possible exploit the potential for good rather than the potential for evil that exits in the great opportunities in there,” said Chanda.

“The President is investing more time, more money under one unit called the Smart Zambia Centre where all the things are being coordinated. The President recognises that the future of development lies in the roll out or information, communication technology which is why he has directed at Zesco and Zamtel and all other government departments tasked with expanding the broadband through the optic fibre must do so as quickly as possible so that the entire country can be connected on broadband for faster communication and ease of doing business. The President is encouraged that this is moving according to plan but he wants greater speed in that respect.”

Meanwhile, Acting-President Davies Mwila led senior government officials and other dignitaries in laying wreaths at the Freedom Statue but made no speech.