Avoid external influence, Scott advised

ACTING President Guy Scott should delink himself from some people who have formed parallel structures in the Patriotic Front (PF) and Government trying to usurp power and manipulate the process of selecting a presidential candidate in the ruling party, the Jesuit Centre for Theological Reflections (JCTR) has advised.

JCTR executive director Father Leonard Chiti said it was clear that there is a parallel structure in the PF that was working to undermine the collective responsibility of Government.

Fr Chiti said there were some people within the PF parallel structure with immense financial resources who were influencing national matters such as the selection of candidates who would advance their agenda.

And Fr Chiti has advised acting President Dr Guy Scott to avoid being influenced by any individual or group of people that may undermine the desire and will of the people.

Fr Chiti said that the group was also working towards undermining the electoral process.

“It is also perceived that some of the people associated with the group appear to have access to immense financial resources to influence national matters such as the selection of a candidate from the ruling party who would advance their agenda,” he said.

Fr Chiti said it was sad that some of the public officers who were tasked with safeguarding national interests had fallen prey to such machinations and thereby neglecting their constitutional responsibility of preserving and promoting national interests.

He warned that if not checked, the group had the potential to plunge the nation into anarchy and tear apart the peace and unity that Zambian had enjoyed in the last 50 years.

Fr Chiti said the earlier decision by acting President Dr Guy Scott to fire Edgar Lungu as party secretary general was against Zambia’s traditions and culture.

He urged Dr Scott to demonstrate leadership in managing the current difficult and painful transition by being more consultative within the established party and Government structures.

“We call for a more rational, level headed and unifying approach to national matters,” he said.

Fr Chiti said Dr Scott should display an impartial, objective, professional and statesman like approach to governing the country until the nation goes to the polls in January 2015.

He also appealed Zambians irrespective of their political affiliation to remain calm and continue to mourn the departed President with honour and dignity.

Fr Chiti said Zambians should be vigilant and avoid being drawn into acts of violence or actions which may bring divisions in the nation.

He said JCTR had noted with concern the language and tone of some sections of the media which could raise tensions, bring divisions and breach the peace the nation had enjoyed for many years.

Fr Chiti urged such media entities to refrain from such irresponsible behaviour and work towards conveying credible information and not to be seen to be peddling falsehoods.

“The media should be contributing to easing tensions and project the good image of the country as we welcome the world to mourn with us at this time,”

Fr Chiti appealed to the leadership of PF and opposition leaders to contribute towards preserving harmony and to guide the conduct of their followers.