Katema told off over constitution

Information and Broadcasting Services Minister Joseph Katema and other Patriotic Front (PF) leaders are deliberately ill-advising President Michael Sata on the constitution making process, says Edward Mumbi.

Mr Mumbi who is former PF secretary general has said Zambians will hold Dr Katema and other PF leaders accountable for causing anguish to the Head of State on the failed constitution promises.

He said it was shocking that Dr Katema could claim that the current constitution was democratic when the document was aggressively condemned by the ruling party while in the opposition.

Mr Mumbi said attacks on United Party for National Development (UPND) leader Hakainde Hichilema were unwarranted because the opposition leader was merely reminding the PF and its leadership of the pledge they made to Zambians of enacting a new constitution.

The former special advisor to Mr Hichilema said it was clear that Dr Katema was praising a defective constitution for no other discernible reason apart from greed and personal political interests.

He said it was out of greed that Dr Katema along with other PF ministers and leaders that they had manipulated President Sata so that Zambians could rise against him for failing to meet their expectations.

Mr Mumbi said if President Sata was the same person he knew and worked with, he would have no problems giving Zambians a new constitution, an undertaking he solemnly made while in the opposition.

He said that when he was the secretary general of the PF, the party then moved a private members bill in Parliament because the current constitution which Dr Katema was praising did not have the 50+1 percent clause for a candidate to be elected president.

Mr Mumbi said although Dr Katema was referring to the smooth transition of power from one president to the other, all the past president, including President Sata were elected on a minority vote.

He said the PF campaigns in 2011 were mainly anchored on the enactment of the new constitution and that Dr Katema must stop misguiding Zambians because the current document was still defective although it had overseen several peaceful elections.

“Out of greed and the desire to continue abusing Zambians, they have ill-advised and manipulated President Sata because if the President is the man I knew and worked with, he would never have problems delivering the new constitution.

They have cheated the President and they are not helping him to govern because we have seen them fighting for the presidency when there is a sitting Head of State. The same document the PF condemned while in the opposition should suddenly be such a democratic constitution…how ironical,” Mr Mumbi said.

Mr Mumbi said abusing Mr Hichilema by calling him narrow minded and with private interest had exposed Dr Katema’s low level thinking and understanding of important national issues adding the opposition leader was only playing a role of a good citizen by reminding government of its obligations.

He said he was doubtful if Dr Katema’s statement could have the blessings of President Sata who personally made an undertaking to the Zambian people.

Mr Mumbi said what Dr Katema must know was that Zambians would continue demanding their constitution which they were promised by the PF when they were pleading for votes from the electorate.

He said even in the next elections, Zambians would remind the PF about their promise and would demand to know where the draft constitution could have disappeared to after it was completed..

“And today, Dr Katema should say Mr Hichilema is desperate for reminding them about the failed promises. PF should know that even in the next general elections, Zambians will ask them where their document is. He should stop insulting Zambians but should instead be thankful to President and help him to govern on the promises he made to the Zambian people without causing him (Sata) unnecessary anguish,” Mr Mumbi said.