Friday, November 19, 2010

Kitwe mayor complains to Chituwo over provincial officer's conduct

Kitwe mayor complains to Chituwo over provincial officer's conduct
By Mwila Chansa in Kitwe
Fri 19 Nov. 2010, 04:04 CAT

KITWE mayor Elias Kamanga has urged Copperbelt Province local government officer Solomon Sakala not to behave like a policeman or a school prefect for mayors on the Copperbelt.

Reacting to Sakala’s threats of disciplinary action on him for allegedly going out of the country without clearance from Cabinet Office, Kamanga said Sakala’s threats were totally misplaced. Kamanga said he found Sakala’s threats quite strange, especially that he was not his supervisor.

“Is it not amazing that the office of the provincial local government officer should threaten the office of the mayor which by government protocol is equivalent to deputy minister?” he wondered.

“It is actually gross insubordination for a provincial local government officer to dress down my office and indeed any mayor in the press in the manner that has now become fashionable for the provincial local government officer.”

Kamanga said he had since complained to local government minister Dr Brian Chituwo over Sakala’s conduct.

He said he was comforted by the fact that Dr Chituwo agreed with him that Sakala had overstepped his limits by addressing himself to the elected office of mayor.

He said he had been very reluctant to issue press statements because he did not want his office and the council at large to be misunderstood but that the continued innuendoes and insinuations in some sections of the media had made it imperative for him to clear the air.

Kamanga said, in fact, the Zambian delegation to the meeting he went for in Namibia was led by local government deputy minister Moses Muteteka and that before he went out of the country, he personally phoned Dr Chituwo, who said it was okay for him to go.

When contacted, Sakala said he did not want to comment on the matter.

“I do not want to comment. I have never spoken to Mr Kamanga,” said Sakala.

Local government permanent secretary Timothy Hakuyu said he could only make a proper comment after fully understanding the context of the briefing by Kamanga. However, Hakuyu said the issue of quarreling in the press over seniority was unacceptable.

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