Governance activist Brebner Changala says the manner in which former State House Press Aide Amos Chanda resigned has shown how State House is captured.

On Thursday, June 6, 2019, Chanda announced his resignation at a press briefing held at State House and explained that the decision was taken to ensure that President Lungu maintained his political success as Head of State.

But commenting on the development in an interview with News Diggers! Changala said it was unprecedented that a State House Spokesman would resign with such “splendour”, where he could use State resources to communicate his resignation.

“Amos resigned a day after the President came out to attack the Financial Intelligence Centre and its report. Also in his resignation, Amos reveals that there are two types of copies for the FIC; there is a copy that is released to the public, which has no names and there is a copy that is taken to the President and other investigative wings where there are names of the suspected wrong doers. And he did reveal that he appears in the FIC report that was given to the President and in that report he’s being accused of having received USD$3.3 million, which he says he has never seen in his life. So he throws serious assignment on you journalists to find out who else appears in the FIC report by name… Amos has resigned at a time when Zambia is going through an economic meltdown and at a time when corruption is on the up swing, especially corruption which is suspected to be happening in the Presidency,” Changala said.

Changala said Amos had left office with such splendour and in a manner which only an elected President could do.

“This is telling you one thing about where power really was because Amos is doing the things which the people of Zambia expect to be done by our Head of State. He has done what his Principle, the elected President has never done. It shows you how State House has been captured or is indeed captured by those who work at Mr Lungu’s pleasure. This also shows how much power the president has subleted to his special assistants because one wouldn’t expect that resignation to be held at State House or indeed to be announced by Mr Amos himself, it should have been by his Principle, the President,” he said.

Changala insisted that the manner in which Amos resigned showed how powerful he was and how State House had been captured.

“Body language is very important; Amos is leaving office probably after he had struck a deal with the President. There is something they want to do together in the near future and that’s why the President has told him ‘you go first then you come back when we want to do ABC together’ because he’s leaving the President as a special assistant on a very high note, as if he was the President himself. But the body language, the occasion, the manner, the posture tells you something else. State House is under siege! It also tells you that the President has got no time in the management of the affairs of this country. This country is being by a few individuals in whom the President has empowered to do whatever they want to do,” Changala said.

“President Edgar Lungu and Amos Chanda have done a disservice to the Republic of Zambia by attacking an institution that is building confidence in the management of the State affairs. This is talking back to the people of Zambia; that your treasury is under attack by an elite group that you have entrusted with power to manage your affairs. And they have regrouped to attack the people of Zambia by attacking the FIC which on our side is being celebrated. So for Amos Chanda to come out so strongly, attacking FIC doesn’t sit well with many. So they are isolating themselves and I know that the empire of the mischief and financial abuse is slowly but crumbling. The signal that Amos has given also shows you that they are at war in the President’s office and indeed the party itself.”

Changala also said Amos spoke like a politician when he resigned and not like a civil servant that he was.

“He spoke like an elected man with full authority and resigning from the pinnacle of power, it shows you a lot. Even where he’s going, this could be a set up. He might have not completely left Mr Lungu alone but he’s going somewhere else to work on something that might help him to prolong their stay in power. Mind you, he’s talking about the National Dialogue Forum resolution which does not allow a civil servant to stand for elections until he has left office for a period of two years. He’s talking as if that is already an Act, he’s so confident that this is going to be a law,” said Changala.