NANCY SIAME, Lusaka
PRESIDENT Edgar Lungu has cautioned newly-appointed Minister of Chiefs and Traditional Affairs Joseph Katema against interference in the succession of traditional leaders.
President Lungu said at State House in Lusaka yesterday that traditional leaders are very sensitive and need to be handled well.
President Lungu said this when he swore in Dr Katema, Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry Margaret Mwanakatwe and Deputy Minister at State House Mulenga Sata.
“If you have any difficulties, please let me know. Don’t interfere in succession wrangles, keep away from that,” he said.
Mr Lungu is confident Dr Katema, the former minister of Information and Broadcasting Services, will carry out his new responsibility well.
“You are best suited for the position because we are expected to pay respect to our traditional leaders and I know that you can do that,” he said
President Lungu said this in Lusaka yesterday when he swore in Dr Katema, Minister of Commerce, Trade and Industry Margaret Mwanakatwe and Deputy Minister at State House Mulenga Sata.
Others sworn in were Luapula Province permanent secretary Boniface Chimbwali, Deputy Inspector General of Police Kakoma Kanganja and Deputy Air Force commander David Muma.
And Mr Lungu urged the newly appointed “men in uniform” to respect the hierarchy of command and the constitution.
“I do not expect you to undermine your superiors. In politics it’s easy to undermine your superiors but for those aligned to defence and security, yours is to respect the laws of the land,” he said.
The President said the two must not be reporting to him but to their superiors and urged them not to fail in their duties.
Mr Lungu said he will soon pass a statutory instrument to enable the police have two deputy inspector generals of police.
“One will be in charge of administration and another in charge of operations. In the past, we have had a situation where the one in charge of operations carries the same rank as field officers making if difficult for decisions to be implemented,” he said.
The President said he wants professionalism from defence and security personnel and that those who choose to join politics must retire.
Mr Lungu urged Mr Chimbwali to ensure that civil servants in Luapula deliver that which the PF promised the people of Zambia as it is one of the least developed provinces.
“If you find anyone as the stumbling block in your duties, bring them to me so that we take them out of the way,” he said.
The President said that Mr Sata deserves the position of deputy minister at State House and urged him not to be constrained by critics as they will always be there.
“Utilise this position, I have not just created it. It has always been there except that the former president did not appoint anyone,” Mr Lungu said.
He urged Mr Sata to help bring sanity to the streets of Lusaka.
To Ms Mwanakatwe, the President said he expects her to enhance the small-scale entrepreneur sector to full-fledged corporate bodies.
“You have been to Ghana and you have seen how powerful their economy is. The challenge is yours but we will support you,” he said.
In separate interviews, Mr Sata, Mrs Mwanakatwe and Mr Chimbwali pledged to work to the expectations of the President and the people of Zambia.
Mr Sata said he did not expect the appointment and said he will work hard to ensure that he delivers in his duties.
Mrs Mwanakatwe said she is elated with the appointment and that it is a challenge which needs a lot of focus and will need her to hit the ground running from day one.
She said she will focus on entrepreneurship and infrastructure that will encourage people to become entrepreneurs.
Mrs Mwanakatwe said she will ensure that companies such as Nitrogen Chemicals of Zambia (NCZ) are revamped
“I want to ensure that the economic zones foster the growth of the economy,” she said.
And Mr Chimbwali said he will ensure that Luapula is revamped by increasing fish farming.
And President Lungu has reverted Muchinga Province permanent secretary Bwalya Ng’andu to the Bank of Zambia (BoZ) as deputy governor – operations.
Dr Ng’andu has been on secondment to the civil service as permanent secretary for Muchinga Province.
This is contained in a statement issued in Lusaka yesterday by special assistant to the President for press and public relations Amos Chanda.
“In January last year, you were reassigned to government as permanent secretary. Just as at Bank of Zambia, the position you have as deputy governor (operations) is a critical position, especially at a time when we face intractable challenges in both the domestic and global economies. There is a compelling need to use monetary policy to stimulate the economy and it cannot be business as usual,” the President said in a letter to Dr Ng’andu.