THE Patriotic Front (PF) has described as careless United Party for National Development (UPND) president Hakainde Hichilema’s call on Zambians to commemorate the golden jubilee as opposed to celebrating the occasion.
During a press briefing in Lusaka yesterday, Mr Hichilema said Zambians cannot genuinely celebrate the golden jubilee amidst high levels of poverty, hence the need to only memorialise the day.
The UPND leader, however, said commemoration of 50 years of independence should be a non-partisan affair and praised freedom fighters for the country’s political freedom.
According to news monitored on ZNBC, Mr Hichilema also paid tribute to President Sata for doing his best in the past three years, and praised former presidents for leading the country.
Mr Hichilema also used the occasion to call on Government to immediately release the draft constitution.
But PF director for media and publicity Brian Hapunda has asked Zambians to celebrate the golden jubilee.
Mr Hapunda said it must be borne in mind that the freedom Mr Hichilema and all Zambians are enjoying is a product of the gallant freedom fighters’ efforts in liberating the country from the yoke of colonialism, hence must be celebrated.
He described Mr Hichilema’s remarks on the golden jubilee as irresponsible.
And PF Lusaka district information and publicity secretary Matafwali Mwenya says Government will not act on instructions and deadlines regarding the release of the final draft constitution by the opposition party leaders, reports KELLY NJOMBO.
Reacting to calls by Mr Hichilema that Government should release the draft constitution before Friday this week, Mr Mwenya said Government is committed to releasing the draft constitution within the jubilee season.
He said in a statement yesterday that Mr Hichilema will not be allowed to start giving the democratically elected government deadlines.
“President Sata will never betray the people of Zambia in any way. He remains committed to delivering the constitution. On this score PF government has already shown goodwill to release the constitution within this jubilee season. We therefore find Mr Hichilema’s demands strange and highly malicious meant to pre-empt Government’s goodwill on this process,” Mr Mwenya said.
He said the PF government owes Zambians delivery of the final draft constitution.
Mr Mwenya, however said Government does not owe this duty to Mr Hichilema as a person or UPND or civil society organisations.