Addressing a huge rally at Chivuna grounds in Magoye yesterday to drum up support for Patriotic Front (PF) candidate Eugene Munyama during the November 28 by elections, Mr Sata said he did not believe in tribal politics and that suffering does not discriminate based on tribe.
Mr Sata urged the people of Magoye to vote for Mr Munyama saying he would serve them better as he would be working closely with the ruling party. “I don’t believe in tribe. No one asked God that I should be Bemba, Ila or Tonga. Suffering does not discriminate,” he said.
He said the PF had no MPs from Southern Province saying that was why he appointed some MPs from the MMD to run the affairs of the province.
Mr Sata said the residents of Magoye were, however, free to vote for a candidate of their choice but their choice would entail whether they wanted development or not.
He said UPND members of Parliament had not done much to develop Southern Province and that they rarely talked about the problem of livestock diseases which were wiping out animals in the area.
He said Southern Province just like North-western Province had great potential and were among some of the richest provinces in Zambia.
Mr Sata said UPND leader Hakainde Hichilema had nothing to offer the people of Southern Province hence the need for the people to work with the government.
The president said Mr Hichilema was cheated into believing that Mr Sata would die between 2009 and 2011, hence getting into a pact with the PF so that he could ride on the party’s back.
Mr Sata said his Government was determined to develop Southern Province and that so far the Bottom road which had been neglected for a long time was now being worked on.
He said advertisements for feasibility studies had already been placed.
He said the Government would also find investors for the Munali Nickel Mine which had been placed on care and maintenance.
PF campaign manager for the Magoye by elections, Wylbur Simuusa said the PF had taken the president to the area on his first trip to show that he loved the people of Southern Province.
Mr Simuusa said Mr Hichilema who was in the area recently was cheating the people that Mr Sata hated Tongas.
He said Mr Hichilema should not be taken seriously. Kabwata MP Given Lubinda said Mr Hichilema was hoodwinking people that if they vote for Mr Munyama of the PF, they would be voting for a Bemba.
Mr Lubinda who is Information, Broadcasting and Tourism Minister
said Zambia was built on the notion of one Zambia One Nation which
should be nourished.
He said politics had confused Mr Hichilema and that he should leave them to people who were capable to handle them in a proper manner.
Meanwhile, President Sata has said the Government is in the process of mechanising villages so as to boost the agricultural sector by ensuring that they are provided with tractors.
Mr Sata said the ministry of Agriculture and Livestock would provide villages with tractors so that they could be used on a lease basis for cultivation.
Mr Sata who was speaking when he paid a courtesy call on Chief Hanjalika at his palace in Mazabuka yesterday said the government had also decided to engage chiefs in the distribution of farming inputs as traditional leaders were more accountable.
He said that had it not been for chiefs helping out in the distribution of inputs, the commodity could have ended up on the market instead of benefiting the vulnerable farmers.
“We want to mechanise villages and we will give them tractors which they can lease.
They can hire out to villagers who are ready to plough even if they don’t have money as they will pay after they harvest,” Mr Sata said.
He said also on top of the agenda in the agriculture sector was to eradicate livestock diseases so that the country can boost beef exports.
Mr Sata said South Africa had a big market for beef which Zambia could exploit instead of that country importing the commodity from Argentina.
Mr Sata also said that there was need to work on the Mazabuka-Magoye road so as to make it easily accessible. Speaking earlier, Chief Hanjalika said his chiefdom was peaceful and that the input support programme was smoothly running.
Chief Hanjalika commended the Government for the early purchase of the maize before the onset of the rainy season.
He said his subjects had enough maize which would last them to the next harvest. Chief Hanjalika further thanked the Government for increasing the chiefs subsides in the short period that it has been in office.
TIMES OF ZAMBIA