UPND parliamentary chief whip Situmbeko Musokotwane says his party will continue mounting pressure on President Edgar Lungu until he fires corruption-accused Housing and Infrastructure Development Minister Ronald Chitotela.
On Friday, opposition UPND members of parliament walked out of Parliament in protest after Chitotela rose to address the House during a question and answer session.
The MPs walked out as Chitotela rose to respond to a written question from Shang’ombo member of parliament Mubika Mubika who wanted to find out when the construction of telecommunication towers in Shang’ombo district would commence, how many towers were earmarked for construction and which areas had been identified for the construction.
In an interview, Musokotwane said Chitotela was supposed to step aside in order for the case to go smoothly.
“The reason is very simple, I am sure you have heard the outcry from the Zambian people and the public expressing their disappointment and surprise at the fact that minister Chitotela who is before the court of law has been allowed to continue in office. So members of the public are very disappointed with that and as members of parliament we share that disappointment and the walking out was an act of showing displeasure that if he shouldn’t continue staying in office and also urge the president to reconsider his position over this matter because I think the precedence has already been established in so many cases whereby if somebody finds himself in a situation like that of honourable Chitotela in the past governments of the previous presidents and including under the presidency of president Lungu himself, people like that have been asked to step aside to enable the investigations to proceed smoothly without any fear of interference on gathering of the evidence,” Musokotwane said.
Musokotwane said his party would continue mounting pressure for Chitotela’s removal using different tactics.
“So this is the reason why members of parliament decided to walk out. I don’t want to reveal our tactics but I can tell you that the pressure will keep mounting. So we go by the precedence of leaders that have been arrested before and what has happened to them,” said Musokotwane.