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State House says the country is in a difficult situation and security wings are doing everything in their power to stop the gassing of houses, but “this cannot be wiped out in one day”.
And State House spokesperson Isaac Chipampe says President Edgar Lungu has promised to speak on the gassing of houses once he knows the truth.
Speaking during a press briefing at State House, Wednesday, Chipampe said citizens should not live in fear.
“It is a difficult situation we are in. The president can assure the nation that security wings are doing all they can but you can’t expect this thing to be wiped out in one day. But we all know that security wings are on the ground including the army so you can see the effort. So for someone to say that the President is not serious, or he is not being responsible, is unfair. If there is someone who is affected by what is happening, it is the President himself. I think everybody saw the First lady weep so it shows how the family is affected apart from the office,” Chipampe told journalists.
“The whole information will come out and the President is assuring that he is going to speak at the end of the day but he can’t speak now because the investigations are still going on. There has been a lot of calls for the president to speak but the President has said ‘I will only speak if I know the truth.’ I think as we go on the President will meet the affected families. The President has been talking at various forums but addressing the nation is just one of the ways that he can communicate to the masses. He is going to address the nation when it is appropriate. You know that he also depends on security advice before he talks. So this issue is being handed by a lot of security agencies and he needs advice before he commits himself to say anything. Otherwise we will end up speculating like we are seeing and accusing each other.”
He said the people who were behind the gassing wanted the President to declare the State of emergency so that he would be criticised.
“I am sure the people behind this want the President to declare a State of emergency so that they criticise him on the same issue. That is the question the president is asking how can I kill my own people? His concern is the fear you are talking about. Citizens should not fear because as you know when fear creeps in, the whole peace in the county is gone. Government is concerned the president is concerned. The President feels that people need to be assured that this will come to an end,” he said.
When asked to comment on the speculation that the State was behind the gassing of houses, Chipampe said what was important was for the crime to be stopped.
“The journalist was referring to Zero option and black Maamba and all those things that happened in the 90’s at the end of the day, something was done and peace retained to the communities. So some of these things happen, it is not only in Zambia. You know that these things happens in America, in the UK these things happen. We are not an island. It is impossible that this thing can happen in any country. But I think what is important is how we the Zambians not only the security leaders not only President Lungu how we will fight this that is what is important. And don’t think that it is only President Lungu who will stop the crime it is impossible he can’t. It is you and I it is everybody’s responsibility we all need to get involved whether you stay in Kabulonga or kanyama,” Chipampe said
“The President says it’s warped thinking to imagine that the government can turn against its own people, just because of an effort to incarcerate one Zambian. He said at the end of the day the people being attacked are Zambians and they may belong to any political party so of what benefit would it be for government to attack its own people? To the people behind the current crimes, President Lungu says we are coming for you whether from the ruling or opposition party, church, NGO. We are coming for you regardless of who you are or what you are. No red herring will distract the current investigations.
State House fruther applauded plans for a day of prayer against the gassing.
“And president Lungu has welcomed plans to have a day of National prayers this coming Saturday. President Lungu has since thanked the clergy for coming up with the initiative aimed at praying for the nation and its people amidst the criminal acts. He called on citizens countrywide to pray for peace and support the church so that the evil can be exorcised from the nation,” said Chipampe.