FORMER Zambia Correctional Service (ZCS) Commissioner General Dr Chisela Chileshe has advised his replacement, Fredrick Chilikutu, to be loyal to the UPND government.

In an interview, Dr Chileshe said he ran his race and it was up to people to judge how he executed his duties.

Dr Chileshe, who was sworn in by former president Edgar Lungu on December 5, 2018, was relieved of his duties by President Hakainde Hichilema last Wednesday.

“I am very proud that I made a family. Any regrets? No regrets at all. I believe in loyalty and I hope the incoming will be loyal to His Excellency and if that is a mistake, I think that is a good mistake to be loyal to the government of the day. The UPND is there, we must be loyal to the UPND government so that they are able to meet their aspirations for the betterment of Zambia. We worked very well and I am sure the lesson is that we are in a relay, maybe I was the second runner so I give the baton to the third runner, and then the fourth one finishes. When the race is done, they are given the same prize, which is a gold medal,” Dr Chileshe said.

“I have handed over the mantle to my friend and colleague whom I know will do greater heights under His Excellency the President. I am happy to be given an opportunity to serve. The people must judge, you cannot beat the drums and dance to your tunes. It is not me to judge, it is up to people to judge whether I did well or not.”

He hoped that the media would be given an opportunity to probe issues concerning correctional facilities.

“I hope that you will be given an opportunity to ask deeper questions and I hope that I fared well in terms of public relations. I did not hide the institution,” said Dr Chileshe.

Speaking when swearing in Chilikutu, President Hichilema urged him to decongest correctional facilities across the country.

“We have a duty to the people of Zambia, that is paramount to everything we do. Sometimes it is easy to forget Commissioner General of Prisons, Deputy Inspector General of police and other colleagues, to believe that now you have the power to do whatever you like, that is not true. You have a rare opportunity to serve the people of Zambia with distinction, they have suffered enough. When we make mistakes, it will be clear, if it is not clear to us, someone will point to us that we have made a mistake and we should be willing to correct that mistake and come back in line to serve the people of Zambia,” said President Hichilema.

“My two colleagues in the correctional services. I am a graduate of that institution, I am fully aware of what goes on in those institutions, there are supposed to be correctional facilities, but at the moment they are not. They hardened us detainees, the conditions there harden us. I am saying let’s decongest those facilities. Deputy Inspector general of police, I said this to your colleagues, give bonds if the matter is bondable. Take people to court as the law says. We shall address the Judiciary; time will come for us to address the judiciary.”