CHIENGI Independent member of parliament Given Katuta says President Hakainde Hichilema’s praise singers risk leading him into the same ditch Edgar Lungu fell into.

In her maiden speech, Wednesday, Katuta said PF supporters chose to worship Lungu to an extent of telling lies by only sticking to what he wanted to hear.

“Madam Speaker, the mistake the pro-Edgar Lungu supporters made was that of placing the interest of the Patriotic Front above those of the nation. Instead of being an extra eye of keeping the promise to serve the people of Chiengi and Zambians at large as per their party manifesto, PF supporters chose to worship the former Head of State to the extent of even telling lies by sticking to only what he wanted to hear, even when the truth on the ground was the complete opposite,” she said.

“One would have expected the UPND supporters to have learnt a lesson, one or two, from the aforementioned PF blunders but alas they are in high gear defending the President’s each word without even digesting it. This mentality has led to chain some of us who have been consistent on the issue of Mr Hichilema being economical with the truth. I will not be doing the Zambians justice if I join the praise singers who may lead the President to a ditch as the former praise singers did to his excellency Mr Lungu.”

Katuta cautioned the UPND government that they risked governing for only five years if they failed to fulfil their promises.

“I want to advise the new dawn administration of His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia, Mr Hakainde Hichilema that they must fulfill their promises or else the people of Chiengi will not hesitate to vote them out in 2026. I am the bearer of the message that the people of Chiengi are saying 27 years, 20 years, 10 years and the latter might be just five years if the promises are not fulfilled. He that has ears let him hear,” she said.

And in his debate, Chilubi PF member of parliament Mulenga Fube charged that institutional corruption had already started happening.

“Madam Speaker, when we talk about corruption, corruption is petty corruption, grand corruption. Corruption is also institutional corruption. We have seen of late where heads of agencies in charge of implementing the law are playing to the gallery of survival and of course to save their jobs. How we understood corruption as the PF is that when a child goes to school and obtains leakage, that falls under petty corruption,” he said.

“When we talk about institutional corruption, which has started happening within the corridors, we are seeing the symptoms we are seeing in the UPND government. When I talk about institutional corruption, it is about you (not a Minister of Education) picking a call and start calling the permanent secretary and start directing him on when they should open colleges, universities. That madam Speaker I would like to state is in the public domain. Corruption is an embedded culture which means to fight the cause of corruption you start by fighting a culture.”

Fube said the August general elections were won based on falsehoods.

“I know that during campaigns, people had to go to town to paint the PF black. And these elections which were won were won based on falsehoods and innuendos. It was based on falsehoods but the PF chose to exchange falsehoods with facts. They chose to exchange falsehoods with facts because they had something to show to the Zambian people that this is what we have done,” he said.

“The elections to the contrary from the way we observed from Chilubi, this was the most dangerous election I participated in, especially that the election was marred by intimidation and violence, and for the first time in Chilubi. That being the case, I want to thank the gallant men and women that braved such an environment, which was [the] first [to be] witnessed in Chilubi since independence. I think this violence I’m talking about and the intimidation came through the UPND who was instigating that.”

Meanwhile, Chama South PF member of parliament Davison Mun’gandu said he was yet to see how the UPND government would peacefully hand over power in 2026.

“Let me also thank and appreciate this great son of the soil Dr Edgar Chagwa Lungu through his greatness and demonstration of how he handled the transition period. I think we are a beacon of democracy in this region, if not Africa as a whole because of the smooth way he handled the transition period. For that, we say president Lungu, you will remain in the books of history in this country to be one of those who demonstrated that indeed power belongs to the people. We are yet to see our colleagues who I know [that] come 2026, they will be saying bye, to see how they will handle the transition and they better start preparing,” he said.

Mun’gandu urged the new government to consider increasing the Constituency Development Fund.

“Madam Speaker, we will also be appealing to the UPND government to ensure that CDF is actually released and released on time. If possible increase this fund, it will be for your own good. It has already demonstrated that it is the only fund that has saved our people on the ground. if you increase for example US$1 million per constituency, it will be thumbs up to President HH, but if you fail we will be able to compare and contrast. People of Chama South will be looking forward to this government to ensure that the CDF is increased so that it serves our rural communities,” he said.

Meanwhile, Mun’gandu described President Hichilema’s speech during the opening of the 13th National Assembly as a “green” speech.

“The speech by His Excellency President Hakainde Hichilema to this August House for me I will refer to it as a green speech, a speech that was 90 percent PF speech but coated with red ink. Why do I say so? If you look at the fisheries sector where President Hakainde had mentioned… those are projects or a policy that was initiated and implemented by the former ruling party, the PF,” said Mun’gandu.

“Therefore it is simply an admission that the programmes initiated and implemented by the Patriotic Front will continue. For that, I would like to congratulate President Hakainde Hichilema because he is simply continuing where president Edgar Lungu has left and that’s how it should be.”