Lukasha Independent member of parliament Mwenya Munkonge says some of the developments that his area has gotten are as a result of him being pro-PF.

Speaking when he featured on the People’s Debate programme on Pan-African Radio, Monday, Munkonge said he decided to be a pro-PF MP in order to take the much needed development to his people.

“I have had benefits coming through being a pro- PF MP. Only yesterday, we were in Kasama during some ground breaking work with the Minister of Health and we were doing ground breaking for two mini-hospitals in my constituency in Munkonge area and in Chiba area. And clearly, I cannot lie to myself because some of these benefits I am getting is from the result of being pro-PF,” Munkonge said.

“I know that it’s not an official position of government to only help pro-PF, in fact some of the things we get shocked like we are still working on our health posts, health centres and we find that in some areas which are held by the opposition, they have already gotten their health centres, but we then don’t fight based on political patronage. We fight the fight of the need for some of these services and it’s a cry of every MP regardless of whether opposition or [ruling]. Your task as MP is to try and bring as much development into your area. And my personal decision was to say ‘look, how do I help my people? And therefore I have made a deliberate decision that I should be pro-PF because even some of their developmental agendas which I have listened to, appeal to me.”

And Munkonge said it was time for Zambia to stop relying on foreign aid.

“I would like to think [that] sometime in the future, we should do away with foreign aid. We should be able to sustain ourselves. We cannot live the life of a beggar. That’s like saying ‘no, I will be begging until I die, no.’ Foreign aid has got its pros and cons and if we use it properly, it should be used to plan for a future where we don’t need it. Yes foreign aid is needed now but we should be strategising to do away with it. We can justify borrowing for activities that are profitable. Borrow if you are going to have an activity that will enable you to pay back what you have borrowed and remain with a profit at the end of the day, ‘go ahead [and] borrow.’ But for a country we must be talking about in the future, building up reserves that will protect your exchange rate, building up developments that will reduce your need on foreign aid,” Munkonge said.

Meanwhile, Munkonge said only a minority were involved in theft of public resources.

“I think we have to understand [that] a thief is a thief, he will not be targeting whether it’s a shirt worn by Seizer (host) or a shirt worn…if he has seen an opportunity to steal, he will steal. So even trying to link it (corruption) to donor funding, generally if a person will be stealing, they will be stealing from the government, they will be stealing from donor funding. They will steal because they are thieves. The fight we have is in trying to upgrade the system to make it less so that it’s not easily manipulated by these sorts of individuals. And they are in the minority. The majority of us would not want to steal. But you see, it doesn’t need the majority to make a bad smell that affects the majority,” said Munkonge.