We want elections in March, July is too far – Nawakwi

Edith Z Nawakwi
Edith Z Nawakwi

PRESIDENT Edgar Lungu must call for elections in March next year because July is too far for the people of Zambia to tolerate him, says FDD leader Edith Nawakwi.

President Lungu told an IMF team that recently visited Zambia that he was planning to call for early elections so that he gets politics out of the way and concentrate on fixing the falling economy.

But Nawakwi said President Lungu will not be in State House after next year to fix anything.

“Who tells Edgar Chagwa Lungu that he will be coming back after the elections? He is going and it is good that he wants to go sooner. In fact, he must call for elections in March, not July, August or September. That is too far. People are tired of him and they want to show him the way,” Nawakwi said.

“He thinks he is being clever, but him calling for election in July is like a soldier who thinks he has ambushed his enemy but his trench is in enemy territory. That’s exactly what Chagwa Lungu, the President of PF, is doing. He is digging a trench in enemy territory, he can’t camouflage himself any more. He has exposed himself by bankrupting this economy, by over-borrowing, laying off of the miners. So us we are ready. We have been ready for elections now.”

And reacting to PF secretary general Davies Chama who recently told her to shut up and leave

President Lungu to work, Nawakwi said Chama’s mouth was only damaging the Head of State further.

“I have read the comments from Davies Chama in which he responds to my statement where I have categorically said that the president of PF, Edgar Lungu, is insensitive and callous in the way he has directed that miners who are being retrenched should take up agriculture as an alternative. I clearly again ask that he demonstrates to the world that he, as a lawyer, can overnight turn into a brain surgeon,” Nawakwi said.

She said whenever Chama opens his mouth, “he puts his foot in it”.

“Chama must define with his President what type of agriculture they want the miners to start doing… Is it goat rearing? Is it rabbit or geese rearing? Is it bee-keeping? Is it irrigation? Is it fish farming? Doesn’t Chama and his President know that Mufulira as a town is near Congo?

Does he want the miners to start farming in Congo because there is absolutely no land [in Mufulira]?” Nawakwi wondered.

“Chama has asked all of us to fill the Kariba Dam in a very unconventional way (urinating in the dam); can the leader of his party [President Lungu] demonstrate how that can be done?”
She said she was committed to helping farmers with agricultural inputs because she was worried that if the hunger levels are not addressed in the country, next year would not be peaceful.

“I think that President Lungu wants to bring war in this country because if people are hungry, they are likely to start fighting. If we don’t eat, that’s a state security issue. State security does not only mean guns, but people’s stomachs as well. A hungry man is an angry person,” said Nawakwi.

The FDD has been donating beans and maize seed to cooperatives, and has also been spearheading a private input support programme for farmers.