HARRY Kalaba says Bill No. of 10 is all about undermining Zambians’ sovereignty and suit the partisan desires of President Edgar Lungu.
The Democratic Party (DP) president, however, believes whether Bill No. 10 is enacted into law or not, it will not help President Lungu because: “his time to go has come.”
He said it baffled him that instead of the President concentrating his efforts on ameliorating citizens’ daily socio-economic hardships, he was steeped into schemes of winning a third term of office.
Kalaba made the remarks in an interview on Sunday.
On Friday, the Constitutional Court, via the majoritarian principle, threw out, for lack of merit, the petitions by the Law Association of Zambia (LAZ) and Chapter One Foundation which were challenging the State’s decision to alter the Republican Constitution through Constitution (Amendment) Bill No. 10.
Except for judge Professor Margaret Munalula who dissented, the rest of the judges of the ConCourt were/are of the view that the mandate to interpret the Constitution or determine an allegation that an action, decision or measure contravenes the law.
The bill, that has divided public opinion, is scheduled for debate in Parliament this week.
“I mean, load-shedding is a huge issue, issues of unemployment are huge. These are the day-to-day issues which the President should concern himself with. A proper administrator will take a lot of interest in ensuring that the price of mealie meal comes down. But that’s not happening because the President is concerned in playing politics, as usual,” Kalaba said.
He stressed that the issue of bill 10 was nothing but pure politics.
“In his mind, President Lungu is concerned that when ministers stay in office during elections they will abuse public resources. For President Lungu, he doesn’t like anything that is straight,” Kalaba noted.
“He wants, at every point, to undermine the Constitution and this bill 10 is all about undermining the people’s sovereignty, the people’s interests and the path on which they should govern themselves. The President is hell-bent on ensuring that it sails through because somehow, for him, his ministers will overstay in office and misuse their offices for giving him a third term. But here is what I know; even that bill 10, in the most unlikely event that it went through, it will not help President Lungu because his time to go has come.”
Kalaba explained further that secondly, “in his mind, President Lungu, as the architect of bill 10, thinks that it will be easy for him because he will get more votes and therefore he will have to seek solace with other smaller politics parties to form a coalition government.”
“But you are wrong, sir! It’s not going to happen because you are one of the [presidential] candidates who is going to get the least votes and nobody is going to be in a coalition with you, anyway,” he said.
“Therefore, whatever he is doing, once the Lord has said it’s over, it’s over. The earlier the President understands that Zambians are disinterested in his behaviour…We are disinterested in what he is doing; we don’t need him anymore as the President of this Republic, beyond 2021.”
Kalaba reiterated that with or without the enactment of Bill No. 10 into law, “President Lungu’s exit is clear.”
“Zambians are dying every day because of poverty but he keeps on playing gymnastics! We have children who are finishing schools, yet they can’t get jobs. He bought a presidential jet for himself…All kinds of things are going wrong in this country and we should all be clapping for him!” Kalaba wondered.
Meanwhile, on Namwala Community Radio Station, Kalaba said under a proactive government a district like Namwala which is abundantly rich in cattle could be self-reliant.
He added that Namwala pastoralists, with realistic government support, had the capacity of producing assorted dairy and beef products.
“In Botswana, pastoral farmers are helped but in Zambia they are struggling,” regretted Kalaba.
Earlier in the day, Kalaba, accompanied by Southern Province DP chairlady Gloria Mapani, attended Church services at Holy Cross Catholic Parish, United Church of Zambia’s St Matthew’s Congregation and Pilgrim Wesleyan Church – all in Namwala.