Be civil, VJ advises Sata

Veteran retired politician Vernon Mwaanga has advised President Michael Sata to be civil in language and stop using offensive words such as ‘useless’ against his MPs, Ministers and other government officials.

Mwaanga said that branding MPs and Ministers in the PF government as useless by President Sata was casting doubts on the capacity of the appointing authority to make good decisions.

He said that it was puzzling that President Sata had adopted an embarrassing culture of humiliating Cabinet Ministers and other government officials in public.

In an interview, Mwaanga said that although he supported the view of reprimanding ministers and other government officials, it was morally incorrect for the Head of State to scold his own government ministers in public.

“Such reprimanding is undermining public confidence in the Ministers themselves as well as lowering their morale to perform. And this has a very negative reflection on the appointing authority’s capacity to make decisions in the best interest of the nation. Referring to his Ministers as being useless it also reflects badly on the appointing authority as people begin to ask as to why he appointed them if they are useless,” said Mwaanga.

He said the continued embarrassing and scathing attacks on minister by the Head of State had the potential of destroying the President as an individual.

“I have been minister for so many years and what I know is that there is a procedure Presidents follow, they do it privately. Immediately you take that route of attacking them in public, then you undermine your ministers and you frustrate them. The morale of working goes down,” said Mwaanga.

He said that the approach President Sata had taken erodes public confidence in ministers and in his leadership.

“Such kind of behaviour or attitude by the President exposes his ineptness in his choices of people to work with him as Ministers. His actions or attitude questions his ability to appoint ministers,” said Mwaanga.

Recently while campaigning in Katuba for the PF candidate President Sata described PF Members of parliament as useless, urging them to visit their constituencies and talk to people about government’s programme.

Last week President Sata at State House described Ministers as useless after appointing Ingrid Mphande as Community Development, Mother and Child Health Deputy Minister, replacing Jean Kapata who has been promoted to Tourism.

And Mwaanga warned that Zambians would rise against the Patriotic Front government in 2016 if President Sata fails to give people a new constitution.

He said that the need for a new constitution was a no compromise matter.

Mwaanga reminded President Sata to make a serious and critical observation of his speech on 14th October, 2011 and page 39 where he made commitment to enacting a new constitution within 90 days.