It is not satanism to be wealthy, it is not being corrupt to be wealthy, bonse tukabila ukulya bwino (we all endeavour to become rich), President Edgar Lungu told Kabwe residents, Saturday.

And President Lungu has denounced violence, saying he has everything to lose should the country be plunged into chaos.

Speaking when he officially opened the Central Province PF conference, the Head of State said it wasn’t a sin to be rich, but called for decent and lawful wealth creation opportunities.

President Lungu began by warning moribund government institutions which were charged with empowering the youth, saying he would reshuffle and retire some people if they didn’t wake up.

“Zambia has a huge and energetic potential for youth entrepreneurship which requires to be harnessed towards national development. We understand and accept that entrepreneurship is the future of Zambia and we see that as the very core of my heart and my vision for industrialisation. Therefore, it is imperative that conditions must be created for the youth of Zambia to thrive as existing and upcoming entrepreneurs. We can never capitalise the economy without the involvement of the young entrepreneurs. I therefore wish to sound a warning to relevant bodies created to serve this objective to show cause why they should not be shaken up. Rhetoric must stop now and action must not only begin now but must be accelerated. Those who are charged to serve the objective of getting our youths into entrepreneurs should wake up. I know there are people who are paid for that purpose. I won’t go into details but next time, when I discuss these issues, I may be reshuffling or retiring some people,” President Lungu said.

“No more of this laissez-faire attitude and rhetoric, we must do more for our people, especially the youth. We must do it now! I want to see action now. I therefore wish to take this opportunity to call for drastic measures to trigger young entrepreneurs to emerge.”

President Lungu said it was not being corrupt to be wealthy, noting that “we all long for wealth”.

“Only the other day I was saying in Parliament that it is not being a satanist to be wealthy, it is not being corrupt to be wealthy but we must give jobs and opportunities for people to make money decently and in a lawful manner. Te sambi ukulya bwino, te bu satanist ukwikala bwino. Bonse efyo tu kabila (it is not a sin to eat good food, it is not satanism to live luxuriously, that is what we all long for). So what I am saying is that those of you who are charged with the responsibility of creating the environment which will see our youths emerge as entrepreneurs, please do so, or else,” he said.

And President Lungu denounced violence, saying he had everything to lose should the country be plunged into chaos.

“I know we have some election in Itezhi tezhi and in Kabwe, what will see us through is discipline. I know we have elections here on the province, what will see us through is discipline. Therefore, those who will be successful in these elections and equally those who will not are expected to exhibit the highest form of discipline. To who much is given, much is expected. Leadership in the party as well as leaders in government are expected to lead by example because no one individual is irreplaceable. I say to whom much is given, much is expected. This simply means that we have been given leadership of this country, therefore, we should protect this country. And I want to re-emphasise that there are those who don’t care what happens to this country but I care, the PF cares,” he said.

“I gave that example which infuriated some people some time back, I said that King Solomon was approached by two women who were fighting over a child and one of the women said that they should cut the child into Two so that they can share that child but the real mother said ‘no, let her keep the child’. Those people who have invested in violence have for nothing to lose but PF and Edgar Lungu have got everything to lose if the country is plunged into violence.”

President Lungu also warned that he would not hesitate to part ways with those who did not abide by the PF’s founding principles.

“A chain is only as strong as it’s weakest link, no one is indispensable. I therefore will not hesitate to part company with anyone and anything that takes the party away from its founding ideals. Patriotic Front demands hard work, honesty, sacrifice and self reliance in all its activities in order to improve the living conditions and ensure better benefits to the people of Zambia,” said President Lungu.

Meanwhile, the Central Province structures endorsed President Lungu as their candidate for the 2021 elections.