FORMER secretary to the cabinet Dr Sketchley Sacika says President Edgar Lungu should fire Information and Broadcasting Services Minister Dora Siliya because her tribal remarks are reckless and irresponsible.
And Dr Sacika says the whole Bill 10 process was a fraud, urging President Lungu to emulate Dr Kenneth Kaunda in ensuring a consensus in the Constitution-making process.
In an interview, Sacika observed that given that President Lungu was ineligible to stand next year, he had nothing to lose by dropping Siliya from her position as a means of protecting his legacy.
“President Lungu has nothing to lose but everything to gain by taking decisive action against extremists in his party and government, like Dora Siliya, who are driving this country in the wrong direction. President Lungu is not standing in the election next year because the law does not allow him to do so. So, he must be concerned about his legacy, about the legacy he is going to leave with the people of Zambia. Now, people like Dora Siliya have absolutely no sense of the future. All they are thinking about is how to win an election and to secure small jobs for themselves as ministers. They don’t think about the damage they are doing to the country by behaving in such a reckless manner! This is not the way to run the affairs of the country because what we do today or what we fail to do today will impact negatively on the affairs of the country in the future,” Dr Sacika said.
“How can you be happy as a President or as a minister running a country, which is broken, you cannot be happy. Wise leaders or wise people learn from the mistakes of others and avoid making the same mistakes, but apparently, our leaders don’t think in that way. Now, what Dora said in Sinda (District) is reprehensible and dangerous and President Lungu should do something about it. In fact, he should fire her as a minister and take further measures, such as not adopting her in the elections next year because she is a reckless person and thoroughly irresponsible!”
He charged that Siliya spat on the national anthem with her toxic tribal remarks which she issued in Sinda.
“The national anthem that we sing every day is a Zambia’s prayer to God, that’s what it is. Every time we sing the national anthem, we are praying to God to make Zambia what you say in the National anthem, but Dora spat on the national anthem! How can we say, ‘one land, one nation is our cry’ when Dora is busy promoting hate against fellow Zambians? How can Dora encourage people from Eastern Province to defraud their own government’s Social Cash Transfer scheme through pretending that they are poor when they are not? How safe is our country in the hands of people like Dora? We are not safe at all,” he cautioned.
“Running government is not a play matter and these are serious offenses for which Dora must be punished! If a president, who fails to act decisively against her, he will be damaging his own reputation beyond repair. No president can entertain the likes of or the thinking of Dora Siliya.”
And Dr Sacika said the whole Bill 10 process was a fraud.
“The whole Bill 10 exercise was a fraud, conceived and polluted by persons, who are not honest and sincere. For goodness sake, Zambians can do better than this! When Kaunda was confronted with a similar problem in 1991, he was prepared to sit with MMD, sit down with them, discuss the Constitution they wanted to change and they arrived at a consensus. I was a cabinet secretary at the time and I know what happened. The House of Parliament at the time was a One-Party Parliament, if KK had wanted, he would have said to Mr Chiluba and MMD, ‘I am not interested in your objections to the Constitution, I am going ahead to enact the Constitution as it is because the whole house was one party…’ but KK climbed down. So, they needed to obtain consensus on the Constitution and he was prepared to accede to the objections that Chiluba and the MMD had made to the Constitution,” said Dr Sacika.
“Leadership does not mean that you must be a dictator, this is what was happening with the Bill 10 issue, they wanted to dictate terms, and the people behind that spent so much money to drive a project that was doomed to failure right from the word go. Now, with the falling away of Bill 10, given Lubinda must now present the revised Public Order Act.”