Friday, September 04, 2009

HH urges Zambians to join media in challenging Rupiah

HH urges Zambians to join media in challenging Rupiah
Written by George Chellah
Friday, September 04, 2009 5:17:37 PM

UPND leader Hakainde Hichilema yesterday urged Zambians to join the media in challenging President Rupiah Banda’s dictatorial and corrupt administration. In an interview, Hichilema said the media should not be left to fight alone.

Hichilema said there was no doubt that President Banda had failed to provide leadership in many respects. He warned that a crime does not get eaten away by a rat or ants, saying it remains there.

"Zambians must stand up and say no! I don't know when Zambians will stand up and consider it enough, for me I have reached that position, this is enough. Rupiah Banda was never a leader that was going to provide leadership in this country," Hichilema said.

"This is confirmation of what we knew before Rupiah became President. Zambians will have no say in the governance of their country. The situation will be worse because all that matters to Rupiah is to stay in office in 2011."

He said Zambians would not participate in any governance arrangement in the country under President Banda.

"Where is the rule of law if you can be beaten at the airport, at the magistrate court, if Gaston Sichilima can beat up people publicly? Our systems have collapsed beyond retrieval. Under the MMD leadership you can't retrieve them, look at the Judiciary, what Judiciary can you talk about?" Hichilema asked.

"[Post news editor Chansa] Kabwela is in court today because Rupiah directed that. Everything falls squarely on the inability for Rupiah to provide leadership."

He said Zambians must not be intimidated.

"This is what happens when a government is going out. Just remember what UNIP started doing in the late 1980s. But people stood up...we will stand up against this nonsense you can count on me to stand up to this nonsense. What is happening now is that every move I make they are following," Hichilema said. The end is near we must not be intimidated by these people running in little holes like rats."

Hichilema admitted that there was tension in the country and that President Banda was 120 per cent responsible for this situation.

"He is responsible for the violence, corruption...I agree that this country is under no pilot at all. It's just free for all, we must all come together. We can only succeed together in unity we have succeeded before. I was surprised to hear the European Union saying they are happy with the fight against corruption," Hichilema said. "Our colleagues are not being given correct information. This is what dictators do. When they come for [Post editor-in-chief Fred] M'membe there, the message is clear. The systems have collapsed!"

Hichilema said donors should not sharpen the knife for the corrupt MMD government to cut Zambians' heads.

"The international community should not mislead itself by helping this dictatorial party. They should move away from budget support to project or programme support. By giving money to the treasury it is perpetuating the abuse of public resources," Hichilema said. "Donors should go back to what they used to do. When you have a corrupt and thieving MMD government, budget support is not good."

He said the opposition in consultation with other stakeholders would mount pressure both locally and internationally.

"We can indicate that we are up to something. If you see us in the streets demonstrating and under the law, no one should stop us. That's a clear message and I mean no one. You are going to see various forms of pressure, all legal and all democratic because we know we are dealing with a dictator," said Hichilema.

"We must work together with upright churches. We will mount both an international and local campaign against Rupiah Banda's current violations and dictatorship. This diplomacy prevailing amongst donors is not helping the country. To praise wrong things!"

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