I drink one [bottle] of any type alcohol every day after work for my stomach problem because I am getting old now, says Lusaka Mayor Miles Sampa.
And Sampa says he spends about K40, 000 of his own resources every week to help the vulnerable who visit his office.
Meanwhile, Sampa says he is tired of being attacked on social media.
Speaking when he featured on Millenium Radio’s “Talk at 6”, Tuesday, Sampa said he only drinks one bottle of beer per day for his stomach problems.
“I don’t drink much. I stopped. I used to drink when I was younger, a lot, and everything I drink is just one. So if I drink Chibuku, it will be one packet, if I drink beer it will be one bottle. Even a Mosi I just drink one, even wine, I just take one glass, whiskey is also just one glass. So essentially I don’t drink much. Ninkota (I have grown old). So I drink one of any alcohol every day after work for my stomach problem because I am getting old now,” Sampa said.
“And the point is that drinking is not a problem but just don’t over drink. My voters in the city of Lusaka most of them, young and old drink Chibuku and Chibuku is a legal beer and it’s also very healthy [such that] if you drink it, probably you won’t even need to eat. So as mayor if I am going to encourage them to drink a beer, I will discourage them from drinking anything else other than Chibuku.”
He also explained his viral picture where he posed with a pack of Chibuku.
“The Chibuku picture was taken deliberately. I bought that Chibuku in Garden as I was coming from resolving some land disputes in Emasdale, and I bought it and I had it in mind because I just came across the news that Chibuku was recognized as the number 20 best product or brand in Africa. This Chibuku was discovered in Zambia in 1962 I think in the Copperbelt and now it’s an international brand. It even beat Ethiopian Airline which was on number 21, Kenyan Airways was close at about number 18, and number one was Dangote cement, in between there, there was MTN, the South African company and there was also Airtel. So Chibuku was exciting because it’s our local product,” Sampa explained.
“I have embarked on this programme to amplify everything good that is happening in Lusaka because everybody else is amplifying the negative. So to achieve what I want to achieve in Lusaka or to achieve my promises to the voters in Lusaka, I will operate outside the box, meaning that business as usual will not bring in new jobs. And just that one picture of Chibuku, the Chibuku sales went up, the company that produces Chibuku will need to produce more and to produce more they will need to employ more people and more jobs will be created.”
Sampa said he would verify if Konyagi was a locally produced drink and if so, he would promote it too.
“Actually, I saw the Ministry of Health saying that it’s a safe drink. So I want to fight stereotype where people just believe in things that are wrong. So I am trying to find out if Konyagi is produced in Zambia and Lusaka in particular and if it’s produced in Lusaka or a significant seller, I will open a bottle of Konyagi and take a picture to encourage sales in Lusaka. Everything else I have done since I have been mayor where people are saying ‘no, the mayor has gone mad’ I can justify it. It’s me thinking outside the box to get work done,” he said.
And Sampa said he can never fail to pay for his lunch because he spends about K40, 000 of his own resources every week to help the vulnerable who visit his office.
“Do you know how much I spend at my office giving people that I don’t know per day? On average I gave them about K2, 000 for food, for transport, for medical bills, etc and when I am in a good mood I give them [more]. And sometimes I even run out of cash in my pocket. So if I give K2, 000 a day and you multiply that by five. So I spend K40, 000 giving people I not know, helping the less privileged. So how can I be accused for failing to pay my lunch for K400?” Sampa asked.
Meanwhile, Sampa said those who do not want him to be on social media must first exit the platform instead of attacking him.
“I get attacked ‘ba mayor you like social media’, by people posting on Facebook. What are you doing [yourself] on Facebook? That means you also like social media. It’s a way of communicating. So those who don’t want me to be on social media, you exit yourself and close your Facebook account. It is a very difficult job to be a mayor, it is a very thankless job. I am tired of being blamed for issues that I didn’t issue orders on or I don’t get involved. This is all stemming from when tuntemba (kiosks) were demolished in Chilenje some months back. I just woke up and there were pictures of demolitions overnight and social media went bizarre about Miles Sampa. And some of my colleagues in PF who were posting were deliberately trying to make me unpopular by demolishing people’ stores. So I felt offended at the time because I was not told, I don’t have powers,” said Sampa.