ZAMBIANS will not vote for UPND leader Hakainde Hichilema as Republican President if his strategy is to use unpalatable language, and hate speech against President Edgar Lungu, says Northmead Assembly of God Church Overseer Bishop Joshua Banda, according Daily Nation – a paper run by ex convict Richard Sakala.
He said using unpalatable language, hate speech, and name calling will not help any political leader ascend to plot one.
Bishop Banda was responding to a question after being asked to give his view on a story which was carried in the Post Newspaper quoting Mr Hichilema as having said President Edgar Lungu was such a childish President who if not removed from power, would turn State House into a play park.
Bishop Banda said people who have been seeking to lead Zambians would never find themselves in power if they continued using unpalatable language, hate speech and name calling to ascend to power.
He said the words attributed to Mr Hichilema against President Lungu were unacceptable.
Bishop Banda said there was no way one could build a nation by using unpalatable language.
“We condemn hate speech, name calling in the strongest possible terms, it is not acceptable. The church expected people who wanted to lead the nation to use accommodative language,” he said.
Bishop Banda said political party leaders must embrace tolerance, peace, and love because these were the values of good leadership.
“We are concerned as a church on this growing trend of hate speech, name calling unpalatable language among politicians. You cannot get influence through hate speech and name calling,” he said.
Bishop Banda said the church would not relent in preaching peace, love and unity among politicians.
He said the church started a long time ago engaging politicians to desist from hate speech, unpalatable language, name calling because the vices were against the values of good leadership and a recipe for violence.
“If leaders want peace, love and unity, then they should lead by example themselves,” Bishop Banda said.
He said during the election period, politicians must adhere to the code of conduct because that was what was guiding them.
“We must speak love and peace if we want to be loved by others.
The media should be responsible and stop fueling hate speech. The media should play a uniting role than encouraging unpalatable language. The media must play a role in helping to properly deal and discourage use of unpalatable language,” Bishop Banda said.