Friday, February 12, 2010

Resist alliance between Rupiah, Chiluba - Fr Mutunu

Resist alliance between Rupiah, Chiluba - Fr Mutunu
By Misheck Wangwe
Fri 12 Feb. 2010, 04:00 CAT

LUANSHYA'S Martyrs of Uganda Parish priest Fr Cletus Mutunu has called on Zambians to resist the alliance between President Rupiah Banda and Frederick Chiluba. Fr Mutunu warned that Chiluba's continued participation in active politics and his campaigns for President Banda had the potential to create chaos, hence the need for all well-meaning Zambians to resist the alliance. He charged that Chiluba had caused enough pain in the lives of many poor Zambians.

“He Chiluba has completely lost it. He still has a case with the Zambian people and now he has embarked on a campaign trail for Rupiah, this is unacceptable. Dr Chiluba has failed to play the role of a former president in a democratic dispensation. He is so desperate that he is now campaigning for President Banda as a way of paying back for the favours he has received,” said Fr Mutunu in an interview on Tuesday.

“This is unacceptable; it has potential to cause chaos because majority poor Zambians are not happy with him. He should not be given chance in the political arena.”

He said as a former president, Chiluba was expected to be non-partisan and lead an exemplary life, offering guidance to the nation when necessary and not to campaign or sympathise with the government.

“If someone has retired as president, he is not expected to actively participate in politics like we are seeing with Dr Chiluba. He may from time to time give advice to government but it is not his job to campaign for the sitting president. He has failed lamentably and what we are seeing is purely moral decay in him,” he said.

Fr Mutunu advised President Banda to forget about politics and campaigns for a while and concentrate on addressing the plight of the poor.

He said President Banda's government's performance especially on the fight against poverty was below par.

He said the majority poor in rural areas felt betrayed by those in the government because they had continued to wallow in abject poverty.

“… Poverty has reached alarming levels and it seems there is no tangible plan to address this challenge facing the people from those holding government power. People want to see results from this government and not politics and unnecessary campaigns,” Fr Mutunu said.

He said it was disappointing that the government had failed to manage initiatives meant to touch poor people's lives such as the fertiliser support programme now called the Farmer Input Support Programme.

He said it would be difficult for President Banda to gain public confidence in the context of such problems and underdevelopment.

“Take for instance the fertiliser support programme. It's the MMD cadres that are managing this initiative in rural area. How do you fight poverty if cadres are being entrusted with such sensitive programmes? President Banda must put his house in order,” said Fr Mutunu.

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