The Patriotic Front (PF) should stop playing ‘monkey tricks’ over the health of President Michael Sata, Zambia’s former ambassador to India Andrew has said.
In an interview with the Daily Nation yesterday, Mr. Banda said that it was time the PF ministers and government in general stopped lying about the President’s health because the continued contradictory statements being issued by the state were fueling speculation.
Mr. Banda said it was regrettable that some PF ministers have taken advantage of the speculation to prepare and position themselves for the presidency an act he said was morally and culturally incorrect..
“I dare them now to tell the nation what was happening with the President.
The continued speculation about his ill-health has greatly affected the country’s economy and I feel that it is time the PF and government stopped playing tricks over the health of the President,” said Mr. Banda.
He said that it was sad that government was curtailing freedom of expression by criminalizing the debate on the health of the President which is currently generating a lot of rumours.
Mr. Banda said it was unacceptable for government to suggest that people should shut up and not speculate about the health of the Head of State.
“It is unacceptable that people should shut up and those who debate the health of the President should be arrested. Which constitution are they using to intimidate Zambians demanding to know the health of their President?
I dare them to come and arrest me first because I am now demanding that government should stop lying and come out in the open to state the health of the President and when he is coming back home,” he said.
He said the speculation about President Sata was done by government and not any other person because of their failure to be sincere in their statements.
Mr. Banda said that it was important for the PF to brief Zambians on the health of the President rather than scheming lies.
“The silence and the continued speculation is taking a toll on the country’s economy. I just want to remind them that during the late Mwanawasa’s regime the PF were in the forefront demanding for the constitution of a medical board to ascertain the health of the President then. So what is the problem now for the same to be done on President Sata?” asked Mr. Banda.
He said that the PF while working with what he called a cartel sustained their demands to have the late Head of State examined adding that late Anderson Mazoka was a victim of the cartel that constantly mocked him over his health.
“Nifuna kuti baniuze, let them tell me what is happening with the President.
Neo nifunalini wenye, aba bantu wenye ngako. Nichinji chavuta kuti bati uze zachendi?” asked Mr. Banda.
Pressure is mounting on government to state the health of the President and when he would come back home to continue with his programme.