Chiengi FDD member of parliament Given Katuka has challenged the Patriotic Front government to explain why it cannot honour MMD founding president Frederick Chiluba by naming him after some of Zambia’s institutions and facilities.
Katuta called News Diggers to complain that it was unfair for government to publicly display its hatred for the former Head of State when other leaders like late presidents Levy Mwanawasa and Michael Sata had been named after a number of the country’s institution.
“I am concerned about the way Chiluba’s memory is being treated. Chiluba is the father of democracy in this country but he is being treated like he is a criminal, who did he kill anyway? He’s somebody who taught the Zambians how to be self reliant, he is somebody who fought dictatorship for all Zambians. But today they are naming buildings after the current President but nothing for Chiluba. What kind of politics are these? The legacy of Chiluba has not been respected and it’s like all that he has done has been rubbished and he’s considered a criminal even in his death. Chiluba was never convicted of anything, he was accused and acquitted. So why should the government of Zambia treat the father of democracy like a criminal?” Katuta argued.
“If Chiluba with his team didn’t stand up to fight Kaunda, do you think even this PF could have been there today? Or could Mwanawasa have been there? Really, I am very disappointed and I am hurting by the way they have treated Chiluba and it’s so surprising that all the Zambians are just quiet. I want to know, let the Zambians come with evidence that Chiluba was a criminal. If he commited genocide or whatever else let them prove it. This government of PF should come out to the public and say ‘this is the reason why we cannot honour Chiluba, the father and founder of democracy in this nation. I went to the same school with his children at Lubuto Secondary School and I know what Chiluba went through even though I was young. He was arrested by Kaunda. Where was Lungu? Where was Sata? Where was Mwanawasa or Rupiah Banda? Today Chiluba is being rubbished, even a toilet cannot be names after Chiluba. In Luapula, the only thing that they’ve given his name to is the University which we don’t even think will ever exist. How can we treat people like this?”
Katuka said it was unfair to display hatred for a deceased person.
“How can you have hatred for someone who is dead, instead of correcting this to make sure that our children will know that there were forefathers of ours who fought for this democracy we have now. Chiluba was a real democrat, he’s one Presidents I never heard insulting back those who insulted him in the public. So can this government of PF tell us why when they talk about ‘promoting national unity and not leaving anyone behind’, have decided to treat Chiluba like a criminal,” said Katuta.
“And the ministers from Luapula, how can they forget Chiluba? Even appointed ministers like Ronald Chitotela, Nixon Chilangwa, Emerine Kabanshi, the former Minister of Foreign Affairs [Harry Kalaba]. All these guys, how can they forget what Chiluba fought for? I don’t know if there was anything Chiluba did to offend the PF.”