President Edgar Lungu has defended the position of Deputy Minister at State House stating that it has always been in existence has not been created as a new position in his government as it has.
And the President has directed the Minister of Health Dr Joseph Kasonde to investigate the alleged shortage of medical drugs in some health centres in the country.
President Lungu clarified that he has not created a new position at state house as alleged by some sections of the media but has only appointed an office bearer in an already existing office.
The position of Deputy Minister at State House is said to have been created under the MMD regime by late second republican President Frederick Chiluba.
President Lungu recently nominated Lusaka Mayor Mulenga Sata as Member of Parliament and appointed him as deputy Minister for state house.
The Head of State assured Mr. Sata of his support during his work at state house and urged him to help bring sanity in Lusaka.
Mr Lungu urged the former Lusaka Mayor not to pay attention to critics but to extend his culture of work hard to State House which he had exhibited at the local authority and in Lusaka’s Chawama constituency.
President Lungu was speaking after swearing in former Barclays Bank Managing Director Margaret Mwanakatwe as Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry, Joseph Katema as Minister of Chiefs and Traditional Affairs, Mulenga Sata as Deputy Minister at state house and Boniface Chimbwali as Luapula Province Permanent Secretary.
The President has also swore in Major David Muma as Zambia Air Force Deputy Commander and Kakoma Kanganja as Deputy Inspector General of Police.
President Lungu cautioned the newly sworn in defence and security personnel not to undermine their superiors and to respect the constitution of Zambia.
Mr Lungu expressed confidence in the abilities of Dr Katema and Mrs Mwanakatwe to discharge the functions of their offices because of their competencies in various fields.
The President stressed that Dr. Katema was the best Minister to handle the Ministry of Chiefs and Traditional Affairs and warned him to stay away from succession wrangles.
He said Margaret Mwanakatwe is placed at Ministry of Commerce because of her experience and qualification in field of commerce and industry as she has worked at various high positions locally and abroad.
The President said the new Luapula Province Permanent Secretary Mr. Chimbwali has a big challenge ahead of him as the people of Luapula are expectant of good service delivery.
The Head of State wondered how medicines in some health centres could be in short supply as the country has enough stocks of drugs.
President Lungu has since directed the Minister of Health Joseph Katema to investigate the cause of the shortage of drugs in clinics and that those responsible should be dealt with accordingly.