Donors must mount pressure on PF to fix economy – UPND

UPND secretary general Stephen Katuka has called on the international community to intensify pressure on the ruling PF regime to take the right course and save Zambians from an impending socio-economic disaster.

And Katuka says the candid manner in which outgoing British High Commissioner to Zambia Fergus Cochrane-Dyet openly expressed his serious concerns about the dire situation Zambia finds itself in must not be taken lightly.

On Tuesday, High Commissioner Cochrane-Dyet spoke out on PF governance, corruption and hunger, adding that he departed Zambia, a country he loved, with a sense of unease about the future direction.

In a statement released, Wednesday, Katuka commended the British Envoy, saying what he did was in the interest of the Zambian people, but added that the international community ought to intensify pressure on the PF to ensure that the impending socio-economic disaster was averted.

“We call upon the rest of the international community to put pressure to bear on the PF regime to take the right course to save the Zambian people from an impending socio-economic disaster and political instability whose ramifications would no doubt affect their own interests as Zambia’s partners,” Katuka appealed.

“The UPND commends the UK High Commissioner, His Excellency Fergus Cochrane – Dyet for his statement on the PF government and calls upon the entire international community to do the same. We commend the outgoing UK Ambassador to Zambia for standing with the Zambian people in their time of need. This is as it should be. The High Commissioner’s statement is highly commendable for it is in the interest of the Zambian people.”

He observed that the candid manner in which envoy openly expressed his serious concerns about the dire situation Zambia found itself in must not be taken lightly.

“The candid manner in which the outgoing UK High Commissioner to Zambia openly expressed his serious concerns about the dire situation Zambia finds itself in due to the enormous problems currently facing the country under the current ruling party must not be taken lightly,” he advised.

“It is a timely warning to change the course of direction the country has pursued under Mr Edgar Lungu, to forestall what now appears to be an impending doom for Zambia.”

Katuka stated that Zambians had become defenceless amidst the incompetence and gross abuses by the ruling regime, adding that it could no longer be allowed.

He said the UPND was happy that what it had warned and advised the PF government against was now being pronounced by the international community.

“We, in the UPND, are happy that what we have all along warned and advised the PF government against, has now been pronounced by a different entity altogether, the international community. That the country is currently engrossed and deeply immersed in a cocktail of socio-economic and political quagmire is no longer debatable. The issues of the unsustainable debt, rampant corruption, unprecedented lawlessness, serious poverty levels, induced by corruption and incompetence, are clearly having their toll on the majority of our people,” he observed.

“The Zambian people have become defenceless ultimate victims of the incompetence and gross abuses by the ruling regime, and this can no longer be allowed to continue. Through the PF-induced hunger and unprecedented poverty levels, our people are being denied their rights to food and their inalienable rights to life. Indeed, denial of such basic rights to our people or any other human beings for that matter is as good as putting a gun to their heads.”

Katuka stated that the UPND was fearful that tension would likely escalate ahead of the 2021 elections if the PF’s growing impunity remained unresolved.

“With the 2021 elections drawing near, coupled with the PF’s growing impunity and the issues that almost drew the nation to the brink of a crisis remaining unresolved, we are fearful that tension will most likely rise once again, except this time around, much more seriously,” stated Katuka.




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