Michael Kaingu and President Sata’s dry jokes in Parliament

By correspondent
“My body, soul and flesh were alive when I made the decision to tear that speech and I do not regret my action. The integrity and decorum of the house must be protected,” Dr Michael Kaingu said recently in defending his action to tear President Sata’s speech to Parliament.

President Sata’s lack of decorum when he presented jokes and some sexual ambiguities to Parliament last week has angered opposition MMD vice-president for political affairs Michael Kaingu who has rubbished the President’s written speech by tearing it into pieces.

The floor of Parliament chambers was recently turned into a theoretical stage when President Michael Sata turned comical and delivered numerous jokes some of which were sickening and morally incorrect.

President Sata is well known for cutting jokes especially with his traditional cousins but his sense of humour in parliament turned injudicious when he veered into sexual innuendos to female parliamentarians not to attempt to shorten the name of Labour Minister Fackson Shamenda.

Mr Sata stunned the Members of Parliament, left diplomats in awe while the general public glued to their television sets listening to his speech was bewildered that a Head of State could be so loose with his tongue in a place where he was expected to give policy direction on how the country would be governed.

President Sata has become the greatest exemplar of physical comedy ever to grace the Zambian political screen and his lack of seriousness in dealing with important national issues was exhibited in parliament when he failed to read in full the prepared speech to Parliament.

Mr Sata turned what should have been an important national address to a comical debacle that saw him exchanging verbal commentaries with Members of Parliament and was incoherent each time he attempted to read his speech.

While those in the House were expecting serious presidential pronouncements, Mr Sata chose to spend most of the time rumbling about things that were not supposed to be discussed in Parliament.

Mr Sata literally turned the floor of Parliament into a chat room where he was exchanging jokes with some MPs while others could not help but try to bury their heads in their seats because the President’s jokes had become embarrassing.

Mr Kaingu who is Mwandi MP was not amused by the President’s loose talk in Parliament and when time for debating the speech came, the law maker decided to shred the speech into pieces and he has said the action was meant to remind President Sata that Parliament was not a place where one goes to cut morally incorrect jokes.

His action was a call to President Sata and future presidents that the integrity of Parliament must always be guaranteed by observing its decorum.

Mr Kaingu has maintained that the speech he tore in Parliament was not the one President Sata delivered stating that Mr Sata failed to fully deliver the speech and opted to delve into jokes.

There is without doubt that there is a yawning gap between what President Sata presented in Parliament and what he actually said on the floor of the House and the MPs are having difficulties in debating it because what Mr Sata said off calf is equally expected to be debated.

President Sata’s jokes in Parliament were by any standard crass and morally offensive and that is why MMD president Nevers Mumba strongly feels that a team of medical doctors should be constituted to examine and determine the capacity of Mr Sata to continue holding the office of the president.

Soon after President Sata delivered his speech, Dr Mumba called for a media briefing where he strongly condemned the manner the President behaved in Parliament and described the speech as immoral, directionless and that it lacked parliamentary decorum.

Dr Mumba said Mr Sata lacked direction, was not coherent and largely overlooked parliamentary decorum when he ignored the Speaker of the National Assembly Patrick Matibini and started chatting with Members of Parliament.

The MMD president is demanding that President Sata should apologise for making immoral jokes against Fackson Shamenda and Wylber Simusa who are his cabinet Ministers.

It was unparliamentarily for President Sata to have chosen to dose his speech with some sick political romanticism instead of giving the direction of how the country would be governed.

The Patriotic Front under Mr Sata will never be a paragon of good governance and democracy because the President has adopted a tyrannical style of ruling the country.

Dr Kaingu in tearing the presidential speech has shown revolutionary traits and certainly he would not be an anarchist not even a hooligan as he is being demonized by his political opponents especially those from government.

It is the first time that a parliamentarian has shredded a presidential speech in Parliament and Dr Kaingu has effectively told the President that he does not condone or support the destruction of parliamentary etiquette and his message is without nihilistic malice..

President Sata’s nostalgic jokes each time he has an opportunity to speak to the nation or other people should be a cause for worry because important matters often end up being trivialized.

President Sata has been ducking scrutiny by avoiding press conferences and taking questions from journalists and he is a kind of president whose administration has been mortifying and byzantine.

There have been cliffs of extremism and vitriol from the PF government and this has been caused by their diminishing popularity resulting from the unfulfilled promises and poor governance record.

With the realization that their popularity is fast waning President Sata and the PF are now resorting to regurgitating their ideological propaganda of more money in people’s pockets and more jobs within 90 days just to bend general thought in their favour.

Karl Marx famously said: “the first time history repeats itself is tragic, the second time is a farce” and his aphorism may apply to what Zambia has been through since the ascendancy of Mr Sata to the presidency.

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