PRESIDENT Hakainde Hichilema says youths must organise themselves in order to be awarded contracts in their respective constituencies because government will not allow foreigners to come and build toilets.
And President Hichilema says as long as the UPND remains in power, government will continue to deliver money to all constituencies.
Meanwhile, Veteran Politician Vernon Mwaanga says freedom fighter Harry Mwaanga Nkumbula’s legacy as a Pan African will live on.
Speaking before he laid wreaths on Nkumbula’s tombstone in Namwala District, Friday, President Hichilema insisted that his government would move resources from a small clique of thieves in Lusaka and take it into constituencies.
“We are moving resources from a small clique of thieves in Lusaka that have been stealing public resources and bringing money here in constituencies. We will deliver a substantial amount of money to constituencies as long as we remain in government. That is what Harry Mwaanga Nkumbula wanted, to empower his people. It was not happening but now it will happen. Youths, start getting yourselves organised so that you can do these constituency contracts yourselves. We do not want foreigners to come and build a toilet here. A toilet must be built by the local people. This country has to succeed and it shall succeed,” he said.
President Hichilema said cabinet office would identify all historical sites around the country which would be visited by government during independence commemorations.
“Our freedom fighters are not with us today but we remember the work they did for us. It is important that we must understand what their role was and understand where we are coming from. If we do not know our history, we will lose the way quite easily. To this extent, we have asked cabinet office to identify all historical sites around the country that we as a government will be visiting every time we are commemorating independence. We will be going back in memory lane to go and pay our respects to those locations where our freedom fighters are buried because that is important and we want it recorded in our history. I mean the correct record of history,” he said.
“Harry Mwaanga Nkumbula professed self governance way back and probably he was ahead of his generation and many did not understand him. It does happen to many visionaries around the world and this country included, that one would be way ahead of his generation. Mazoka and Nkumbula are one of those. It is important that we respect people with vision, those who can see what the eye cannot see. We need visionary leaders in order to get the country right in different aspects.”
President Hichilema said the country needed to reflect on the divisive language that few citizens delivered during the 2021 electoral campaigns.
“These men and women loved this country and they were true freedom fighters. These men and women were unifiers. They understood what needed to be done in order to achieve their objective. Some brought in divisive behaviour but Harry Mwaanga Nkumbula and his colleagues fostered unity as evidenced by his signing of the Choma Declaration. It is important that we reflect on the work they did, bring it to modern times and reflect on the 2021 electoral campaigns. We must just reflect on the divisive language that a few of our citizens delivered which is not acceptable if we are to carry this country forward,” said President Hichilema.
“We need to preserve this history. Where there are mistakes and omissions in the history of this country, we must correct those mistakes and record the history and that shall be done. This group of people delivered political independence, our duty is simple and straight going forward. As they delivered independence through unity of purpose, we have an obligation to deliver economic and social independence through unity of purpose as well. I can assure you that the UPND is committed to deliver that social and economic independence. UPND will deliver for the people of Zambia in respect and recognition of the sacrifices our freedom fighters made.”
Meanwhile, Veteran Politician Vernon Mwaanga said Nkumbula’s legacy as a Pan African would live on.
“The struggle of Zambia’s independence would not have been won was it not for the combined efforts of our nationalist leaders like Uncle Harry Mwaanga Nkumbula. He used to have regular meetings with my dad who was president of the Northern Rhodesia African Teachers Association which worked very closely with the African National Congress. Uncle Harry was a very simple man with a very good mind and a very good focus in terms of the future. One of the historical landmarks I remember well was in 1962. We had 45 members of the legislative council. 15 seats were allocated to the lower role, 15 seats to the upper role and mainly for white people and those who attained certain level of education and then the middle role was a mixed role. No political party won the majority which is what the British wanted but after that election, the ANC held a balance of power,” said Mwaanga.
“The UFP wanted to canvas a coalition with the ANC and I remember uncle Harry said to me ‘what do you think I have been fighting for all my life? I am not going into a coalition with the UFP because it will be a betrayal of the people of Zambia. I will go into an alliance with UNIP.’ He was a nationalist at heart and nationalist in flesh. He was also a Pan Africanist who believed that for as long as any inch of Africa remains unliberated, no one of us should feel free to walk the streets of Africa proud. Mr President, I thank you for honouring Uncle Harry. Uncle Harry may have passed on to mortality decades ago but I can assure you that his legacy as a nationalist, a politician and someone who loved his country and his continent, will leave on forever.”