IT is foolish for Edgar Lungu to think he can poke his little finger on international agencies that are supporting this country, says UPP leader Saviour Chishimba.
Lungu last Saturday told donors not to dictate to Zambia who to arrest, daring them to take away their aid if they wanted.
He told journalists after visiting the Kala 48 Marine Barrack in Kawambwa that donors could withdraw their aid from Zambia but they would never withdraw the country’s dignity, claiming that the PF government was capable of improving the economy without external assistance.
But Chishimba said it would be the Zambian people who would suffer if donor aid was withdrawn from the country.
He said Lungu’s statement clearly showed that he cared little about what would happen to Zambians if donor aid was withdrawn.
I want to repeat this; it’s foolish of anybody or the President himself to try and think that he can poke his little finger into international agencies that are supporting this country. Let’s pick America for instance; the United States of America is funding a retroviral therapy programme in Zambia. There are many Zambians who are receiving ARVs funded by the American government,
“The American government, through USAID and many other agencies, is funding numerous health programmes in this country. They are funding programmes in agriculture, among other economic sectors.”
Owing to the magnitude of donor support to Zambia, Chishimba urged Lungu not to insult donors.
He said donors were speaking from a point of concern and not that they were dictating to Zambia.
“There are other agencies which are not necessarily run by the American government but are from America like the Clinton Health Access Initiative or the Clinton Foundation who are helping Zambians access healthcare and are putting in more money than the government is. Even this money they are putting in for healthcare is being plundered through corruption,” Chishimba said. “The same money they are plundering is coming from the donors whom he is trying to confront. When you go to UK, DFID is also funding numerous programmes in Zambia, the European Union as well. This same government is also going to the IMF asking for $1.6 billion to borrow; IMF, which is in America. As a matter of fact, Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu should know that America is the biggest donor of the United Nations. He must understand that there is no country which is an island.”
He said coming from a person who was ill-informed and not qualified to be President of Zambia, the statement demeaning donors was “very foolish”.
Chishimba said the countries where the President had been globe-trotting to were in fact the funders of most humanitarian activities in Zambia, hence found his statement insulting.
The same man has been flying aimlessly like a bird which has no direction, going to the same countries that he is insulting. He has been taking the same money they have plundered back to the same countries. He cannot say such a thing to donors. When they pull out, it’s the people of Zambia who will suffer,
“They have stolen so much that they don’t care what happens to the Zambian people. When the donors speak, they are not speaking because they don’t love Zambia, they are speaking because Zambia is signatory to many international instruments. When they are speaking, it’s because there is signature of Zambia on those important instruments. For them to be sure that their money is secure, they want good governance because a rogue state will not care about repaying the money. There is no country that can exist on its own as an island