UPND leader Hakainde Hichilema says President Edgar Lungu is responsible for planting seeds of tribalism by preaching it to all parts of the country while PF officials follow suit.
And Hichilema says he is aware that President Lungu called Paramount chiefs to State House ask them to compel other chiefs to accept Bill 10.
Meanwhile, the Hichilema says political parties in the Opposition Alliance should remain united.
At a press briefing, Thursday, Hichilema commented on tribal campaigns by PF officials in Chilubi, wondering whether it was a crime to be born Tonga.
“The hate speech we are seeing in PF was dealt with by [Kenneth] Kaunda a long time ago. I don’t understand what is going on with these PF chaps. I don’t understand. My brain is reasonable and I can’t figure out what is wrong with these people. What sickness has entered in to their heads to divide the country like this? In Nkandu Luo’s family, if it is a normal family, there will be intermarriages there
because every family has intermarriages and I have them myself. My son yesterday who just completed school was watching Television and so he asked me saying Dad, what is this thing they are talking about? What
have I done wrong? Is it because I am your son? What crime have I committed to be a Tonga? I have been watching people talking about Tongas. Now, I am also asking Nkandu Luo to answer my son these questions. What has my son done? He is a criminal now in the mind of Luo who is supposed to have gone to school. You know, buffoonery even afflict those who have gone to school. You will see them tomorrow they will go to Church. I know the Church she [Luo] goes to, the Catholic Church a descent Church and I have asked a friend who is a Catholic to say….go and tell the Father what Luo is doing. She is sowing the seed of unchristian in our Country. Hatred is genocidal behavior,” Hichilema said.
“Why has this now become a PF policy of tribalism and hate speech? Why? Ask yourselves these questions. The answer is not far. It is Lungu himself who has promoted this policy of tribalism and hatred in the PF as a formal policy. Why am I saying so? Lungu in Livingstone stood up and said no Tonga will become the President of Zambia as though he is sitting between God and Jesus. He went to Choma and said the same things after the Church Service. He went to Solwezi and said the same things and when he was attacked, he said no, no, no, you misunderstood me, I meant one Tonga only. I meant HH. Is this your nation? When did you take the space between God and Jesus? And on Sunday you go to Church and put your hands together as if you are a decent human being. You are not descent. You are unchristian. You have sown this seed of hatred in our country and people like Luo are just following you.”
And Hichilema said he was aware President Lungu was trying to coerce chiefs to support Bill 10.
“As we have read, Mr Lungu has been calling paramount chiefs in State House between January 26 and 30, asking them to compel other Chiefs, headmen to support Bill 10. Mwaloba Iyauma (you have hit a snag). Bill 10 will not be accepted. Come to the table, negotiate with us, them, we are willing to sit down with you so that we can have the church helping us and other stakeholders so that we can have exclusive process and
consultative process. Constitution making is for the people. It is not for UPND and PF MPs in Parliament. The Parliamentarians are supposed to do what the Zambian people want. So what I am saying to the Chiefs,
my chiefs and headmen including to myself because I am the headman too, is that, let us not agree to support Bill 10 because by doing so, we shall not preserve Lungu and his mall clique to continue eating
when you go to bed hungry. Bill 10 should be withdrawn and taken back to the negotiating table,” he said.
Meanwhile, Hichilema urged members of the Opposition Alliance to remain united.
“We should be a united opposition. We must save a single candidate for the 2021 general election. The issue of whether HH will become a candidate and what will happen to UPND can never be an issue because Zambia comes first to us. We are here for Zambia. We are not here for corruption. We are not here to buy jets. Zambia comes first and UPND is there to make Zambia better. So the issue of HH or not HH is neither here nor there,” said Hichilema.