My name is Chagwa, naliwa kale (I already fell), so I will not fall again by listening to stupid propaganda meant to distract me in my work, says President Edgar Lungu.

And President Lungu says his decision to fire Community Development Minister Emerine Kabanshi was not out of pressure from the opposition, but he personally saw management failure which needed immediate action.

Meanwhile, the Head of State says the colour of the cat doesn’t matter as long as it can catch mice; and therefore he will work with any country, be it China or the West, to help him deliver to the people.

President Lungu was speaking upon arrival at Simon Mwansa Kapwepwe Airport in Ndola today.

“Zambians don’t appreciate. What Dr Kaunda did they don’t appreciate, they only appreciated after Dr Kaunda left. What Chiluba did they didn’t appreciate, they only started appreciating after he left. The same goes for president Levy Mwanawasa, they never appreciated him when he was in office but when he left, they were even mourning and saying ‘we had a great leader’. They said the same about president Rupiah Banda, they are saying the same about president Michael Sata. I have learnt my lesson from these great sons of this country that when you are serving as president, they won’t give you space. They will keep distracting you but if you are not strong, you will fall and when you fall, they are happy,” President Lungu said.

“But I assure you that I am not falling, of course my name is Chagwa, naliwa kale ine (I already fell). Naliima nokwima so I am not falling again (I even rose and I am not falling again). So I am telling you that tuleumfwa efyo abantu bale landa, ifyamano tulefibomfya, ifyabuwele wele twafisula, twa sambamo (So I am telling you that we do listen to what people are saying, the sensible things, we use them, the stupid things, we ignore)…because there are so many people who are talking and ndomfwa fyonse.”

He said some people’s preoccupation was to make sure that PF failed to deliver.

“Amaka yafwile ukuba ku bantu pantu abantu ebakwata amaka (Power is supposed to be with the people because they are the ones who have it). That’s why ifwe epo tulebomba, tatu sakamana sana efyo balelanda kunse nangu mukati ka calo, abo ebashilemona efyo tubombela abantu (That’s why when we are working, we don’t pay attention to what people within or outside the country are saying, those who don’t see the work we are doing for the people). There are people whose agenda is simply to distract government form working for the enhancement of the welfare of the people, to stop government from working for development. I want to take this opportunity to say nshakulaumfwa ifyabupuba (I won’t listen to foolish things),” President Lungu said.

“There are people whose sole intention is to make sure that this government fails so that by 2021, they can point to the failures of government by saying where are the roads you promised the people of Zambia? Where us the clean and safe drinking water you promised the people of Zambia? Where are the heath facilities you promised the people of Zambia? PF, you have failed, please get out, that’s what they want to achieve by distracting us and persistently condemning us that we are doing the right things. Nshafiumfwe (I won’t listen to that).”

And President Lungu said his decision to fire Kabanshi was not out of pressure from the opposition.

“Tatwaleke uku bombela abantu. Ifintu nga fyalubana (We won’t stop working for the people. And when things go wrong), we have the responsibility of owning up and telling the people that ‘ifintu nafilubana apa (things are not okay)’, not to shy away. You know, when I took recent decisions to relieve some of my colleagues of their appointments, it is not out of malice, it is not out of the fact that I am listening to the opposition, no, I saw that there was need,” President Lungu said.

Meanwhile, President Lungu said would work with any country, be it China or the West, to help him deliver to the people.

“I will not relent in cooperating and collaborating with partners, whether they are from the west, the east, whether it’s China, I will work and collaborate with them as long as it is helping me bring development to the people of Zambia. There is one great Chinese leader who says ‘it doesn’t matter whether a cat is white or black, as long as it is catching mice. So tule fwaya bena Zambia baye kuntanshi, noti ifyakumfwa umfwa (we want Zambians to continue progressing, not to keep listening to distractions)…Let those who have their say have their say but let those who have got power change the lives of the people continue working for the lives of the people. They will have their say, I will have my way in promoting the interests of the Zambian people,” said President Lungu.

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