Patriotic Front (PF) deputy secretary general Mumbi Phiri says Bishop Sydney Sichilima’s resignation from his position as Council of Churches in Zambia (CCZ) president is an indication that there are still men of integrity in the church.
And Phiri says the ruling party is planning to start its own TV station.
On Friday, Bishop Sichilima withdrew his participation from the three church mother bodies saying that the move was to preserve the integrity of the United Church of Zambia (UCZ) where he belongs to.
According to ZNBC, Bishop Sichilima stated that as UCZ leader, there were certain Biblical ethics that he could not compromise in executing his pastoral duties hence his withdrawal from the church mother bodies and resignation from CCZ.
His resignation came after a statement by the three church mother bodies; ZCCB, CCZ, and EFZ against the closure of Prime TV which he said he had no input in.
And in an interview, Phiri said Sichilima’s resignation proved there was confusion in the three church mother bodies.
“It is truly showing the confusion and we need more people in the church with integrity like that and even on our political scene. If you feel that you are being misrepresented, it is better you resign. There is more to integrity and we know at whatever positions we are at, we should be individuals at the same time. A group shouldn’t destroy my name for the sake of a group. If I don’t agree, I leave, otherwise hands up to Bishop Sichilima,” Phiri said.
“I am on record of saying because I am PF [and] when I joined PF, I followed the ideologies of PF and even when I disagree…right now I agree with whatever PF is doing, when I decide to leave or when I retire, because I don’t believe in any other policy of any political party, I have made it public that I will go back to what I promised God before the people, it is only marriage where I promised that till death do us part, nothing else. So when I retire, I will go back and start cooking for my husband because that is what I was doing before.”
She said there was a lot of propaganda and malice going on in the political cycles.
“Right now I am a politician because I agree with what is happening. propaganda or malice will never make me move from the ideologies of PF. There are a lot of lies and malice which are going on [and] I am a victim. You heard that somebody claimed when Hakainde was going to be arrested [that] I was part of that group and I pray for that particular person [who] is an MP in UPND who started that story and I hope that before he dies, he should repent ask for forgiveness. If he doesn’t do that [and] thinks it is business as usual, when he dies, he will stand before God and he will not prove his allegations,” she said.
Meanwhile, Phiri said there was nothing wrong with Prime TV operating as a UPND media but argued that there was everything wrong in doing it under a “camouflage”.
“You are very much aware that even as I am talking to you, you publish my stories, whether its negative, I don’t agree with you or I agree with you, you publish. Whether I am saying rubbish or sense, you publish that. Why we are questioning Prime TV, you are all aware. Let me give an example of Mark Simuwe who is my own son who is the editor of Prime TV, the guy [whom] I have known for a long time, from university actually, he is also on the UPND media team. How do you expect anybody to put up balanced news? Can you point out anybody who is in the media team who is with any of these media houses? So when people are condemning to say Prime TV has been closed on what and what basis, let them give examples the way I have given you an example. Let anybody dispute that Mark Simuwe is not on the UPND media team,” Phiri said.
And Phiri said the ruling party was planing to open its own TV station.
“In fact even us as PF, we are thinking of starting our own media television, radio station and newspaper. There is nothing wrong but it’s wrong to camouflage under somebody’s name, that is very unethical,” said Phiri.