CHIPATA Diocese Bishop George Lungu has called on the UPND government to vigorously fight corruption and moral decay in the country.

And Eastern Province Minister Peter Phiri says government will always appreciate and support the church in its vital role of providing services to the people.

Speaking during the priestly ordination of Fr Abel Daka and Fr Martin Chella Changala at St Anne’s Cathedral in Chipata, Bishop Lungu said corruption was a cancer that had killed many young people who were yearning for a better life, by reducing them to perpetual job seekers.

Bishop Lungu cautioned the newly ordained priests against engaging in any form of corrupt activities.

He noted that priests must be the voice for the voiceless as well as agents in the fight against moral decay in society.

“You should never get involved in any form of corruption because that is not right and will never be tolerated in the church,” Bishop Lungu said.

Bishop Lungu further called on the UPND government to give a listening ear to the cries of the people.

“As you know, often new governments begin well but as time goes on, they stop listening to the cries of the people. If farmers are currently stranded with their maize after a bumper harvest, it is your duty as government to warn the Ministry of Agriculture to sit up and urgently address the concerns of farmers,” he added.

Bishop Lungu said the church would always work with the government of the day to succeed in their noble undertakings by uniting the nation and promoting inclusive and sustainable development.

He, however, stressed that the help would only be given to government on condition that political leaders do the right thing that will always be in favour of a common good for all Zambians, regardless of tribe, region as well as political and religious affiliation.

And in his remarks, Phiri, who was a special guest at the function, commended the Catholic Church for the services rendered to the people across the country.

He said the government would always appreciate and support the church in its vital role of providing services to the People.

“Government attaches great importance to the role the Catholic Church plays in the promotion of human life”, said Phiri.

He said the government would continue to partner with the church and endeavour to uplift the wellbeing of the people physically, morally and spiritually.