President Edgar Lungu is a tyrant, I don’t know if that’s how heartless slim people are because that is how Paul Kagame is, says Former Chief Government Spokesperson Chishimba Kambwili.
Speaking on Live Issues programme on Live radio, Thursday, Kambwili observed that the PF was blocking the opposition from holding public meetings.
He charged that the Head of State was a tyrant.
“Today this government doesn’t give permits to the opposition or anybody to have meetings, they are misusing the Public Order Act (POA) with impunity. For instance I am a member of parliament for Roan, for the past one year, police have refused me to have meetings in my constituency. Every time I tell them that I am having meetings in my constituency, they will tell me ‘no, we have to find out from the commissioner of police in Ndola’ and the answer that we get [is that] ‘no he cannot go ahead for security reasons.’ Now I don’t know what security reasons they talk about [because] in the meantime, my colleague from Luanshya constituency Steve Chungu gets permits to hold meetings in my constituency. For him it’s not for security reasons. So democracy under Lungu is not as it was under Sata. Lungu is a tyrant. I don’t know if that’s how heartless slim people are because that is how [Paul] Kagame is and Lungu is imitating what Kagame is doing,” Kambwili charged.
And Kambwili said it was important for the media to recognize government’s good works.
“The second caller says ‘you called The Post as always being negative against government’ yes I did. Even up to now, I am calling the Daily Nation as being negative towards the opposition. You see, I am a very straight forward person, what I meant was [that] as much as The Post can criticize the government, you cannot write headlines on one individual for six months in the negative. I remember that time The Post as a newspaper were writing negatives about Lungu from the time he became president to about six months and I condemned it on principle just like I am condemning the Daily Nation that every day, they are just writing negative things about the opposition and those who are not in good books with the PF government. That is a mistake [and] even in my grave, I will say that it was a mistake because what we expect from the newspaper is to balance. When the government does something good, you say ‘well done’ [and] when they do something wrong, you say ‘this is wrong.’ You cannot carry one headline two years over an individual,” said Kambwili.
“But when you say I went on to close the newspaper, you are lying. I never closed The Post newspaper. The Post newspaper was closed by the PF government through ZRA and you know that when The Post newspaper was closed, the court had ruled that ministers must be out of office, and that’s the time when the ZRA pounced on The Post. I was not Minister of Information [then]. And even if I was Minister of Information, I did not close The Post. You know decisions that are made are not made by an individual. Look at the way [News] Diggers carry their reporting, they are so balanced. If I make a mistake as Chishimba Kambwili, they write about me that ‘no, that is not right’ and they condemn me [and] if the government does good, they say the government has done a very good job. That is what reporting should be.”