Justice Minister Given Lubinda says if President Edgar Lungu makes mistakes, he will be voted out alone in 2021, and as such, the opposition must not get involved in the governance of the country to mislead him.

Lubinda was speaking in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia when he transited to Brussels to attend the European Union 7th International Congress on Ending the Death Penalty.

The minister observed that opposition leaders had a tendency of using back door styles of contributing to governance, instead of focusing on marketing their own party manifestos to win the hearts of Zambians ahead of the 2021 elections.

He explained that President Lungu would never share the credit or blame put on him by the citizens for failing to steer the country to prosperity.

“The tendency by some of the opposition political parties to clamour for governance, for participation of governance in the country is totally misplaced. The role of opposition political parties anywhere in the world is to come up with alternative programmes, not to be participants on the governance of the country. For any given time, there is only one governing party and that is the one that is accountable to the people. For the time being, the only one who is accountable to the Zambian citizens is President Edgar Chagwa Lungu. If he makes wrong decisions, it’s him who will be deselected in 2021. He will not carry the others with him, he will not go and say ‘I was governing with Charles Milupi, I was governing together with Hakainde Hichilema’, he will not go and say that because people will say ‘you are the one we made President’,” Lubinda explained.

“So for others, if their role is just to oppose, let them oppose without saying ‘President Lungu let us sit together and govern together’, no! President Lungu has a mandate to govern and he’s going to govern with his political party. If the others have brilliant ideas, let them go and sell their ideas so that in 2021, the Zambian people can elect them. They must not go and put spanners in the work of President Lungu so that they make him fail because that’s their agenda.”

Lubinda observed that the Constitution amendment had delayed because the opposition was dragging its feet.

They have made him wait for one year with the constitution refinement. Who is to blame? They will not accept the responsibility, the responsibility squarely lies on the shoulders of President Lungu. So I would like to appeal to opposition political parties, instead of trying to find back door processes of governing and contributing to government, let them go and do what they are supposed to do, win the hearts of Zambian people for 2021 and let them allow President Lungu to also continue to govern and win the hearts of the citizens by delivering on his promises.”

Meanwhile, Lubinda said he would not force any of the members of parliament to participate in the constitution refinement process because all lawmakers know exactly why they were sent to Parliament by the electorate.

Further, Lubinda said government would allow all stakeholder to make their final submissions before proceeding to table to the constitutional amendment process in Parliament

“In amending the Republican Constitution, government wouldn’t like to go it alone. We wouldn’t even like to go ahead with only the submissions we received, starting from 2017. We have decided to open yet another avenue for all those political parties and Church Mother Bodies that did not make their submissions. So if anybody has any issue that they would like to submit they will come. If there are people who have ideas on how to amend the 14 days article in the Constitution, as regards to Presidential election petition, they are welcome. If there are others who have other ideas, including how to enhance the Bill of Rights, this is their opportunity. But people cannot claim that they want to participate in a process ,then when they are invited, they shun the process. That’s playing double standard, let all those who are sincere with themselves and with the people of Zambia tell us exactly what they want us to do,” said Lunbinda.

Lubinda said the Public Order Amendment Bill would be released to the public in the first week of March, 2019 and that ti would not wait for the national dialogue process to take place, saying the Public order Act and Constitution refinement processes were not a replacement of the national dialogue.