LUSAKA, Monday, March 11, 2013

His Excellency Mr Michael Chilufya Sata, President of the Republic of Zambia, says his administration endeavours to have a government were all patriotic Zambians can participate in the governance and development of the country regardless of their political and other affiliation.

President Sata wondered why some opposition leaders were against his appointment of opposition Members Parliament as if the parliamentarians being appointed where not Zambians.

“Why shouldn’t we appoint them to government positions when this government is also theirs; it is a government of all Zambians? The Patriotic Front is not an ordinary political party. It is not by accident that we called it a front and not a party. And the rationale was that we wanted to create a front in which all Zambian patriots can participate in the governance and development of their country,” President Sata said.

“For us, it doesn’t matter where one comes from, which organisation he belongs to, which political party he is registered with; as long as he is a patriot and wants to come to the front and serve the country and the people, they are welcome.

We have many people in government who were politically not with us but are patriots and have joined to serve their country and their people.

“So why should we prevent these MPs from coming to serve their country and their people? If these MPs are patriots who want to serve their country by joining government, why should somebody have a problem with that? If you are not a patriot, then you won’t understand what they are doing and you’ll have a problem with it.”

The Head of State said those criticising the concept of inclusivity in the governance of the country lack understanding of what government is. “They must know that government is the instrument by which people cooperate together in order to achieve the common good.

And an authority is needed to guide the energies of all towards the common good,” President Sata said. “Those holding their members captive by stopping them from serving their country are failures at leadership and do not have the interest of Zambians at heart.”

And President Sata dismissed claims that the PF government is obliterating the opposition in the country.

“As government, we find such claims to be misplaced and deceitful. For example, when MMD decided to join forces with more than 15 ‘rebel’ PF Members of Parliament, did the opposition in Zambia die? The opposition in general and PF in particular never died on account of the MMD’s decision to collaborate with a large number of our MPs,” President Sata said.

“In fact, it’s from that state of affairs that the PF emerged to form government in 2011. Let our colleagues in opposition pick a leaf from our vast political experience and become conscious to the reality that it is their responsibility to put their house in order and not the government’s.”

President Sata thanked all political stakeholders who have chosen the interests of the Zambian people ahead of meaningless partisanship.

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