Tonga chiefs upset with PF Secretary General’s insults


CHIEF Macha of the Tonga people of Southern Province says he is fed up with Davies Chama’s “stupid” remarks against his tribe. And chief Mukuni has demanded that President Edgar Lungu fires Chama, the PF secretary general, because he is a liability to his presidency. Chama recently said Tongas should use their polygamous nature to bear more children in order to stand a chance of producing a Republican president in 100 years’ time because the UPND, under Hakainde Hichilema, would never rule Zambia. But in separate interviews, Southern Province chiefs vented their anger at Chama and wondered why President Lungu was still keeping the ruling party’s chief executive officer in his position. “You see, not every person is amused with the utterances of PF. If you look at what he was talking about, what developmental issues are involved in that? Let him talk about development instead of Tongas, Bembas or Ngonis. I think the so-called politicians must tame their language; imagine, there are some Tongas who are not even interested in politics and you go and tell those people you…,” chief Macha said. “If that’s what they want to start saying, if they have failed to rule, let them give others chance to rule the country, please. Let them surrender the country; even chiefs can run this country peacefully. We are fed up with his stupid utterances. Enough is enough!” He said Chama was embarrassing President Lungu. “So the one who appointed Chama should just fire him instantly because he has embarrassed the appointing authority, his party, the country, including myself. I didn’t expect anything like that from Chama, as secretary general of the ruling party,” said chief Macha. And chief Simamba said if Chama is not removed from his position following his tribal remarks, traditional leaders in Southern Province will have difficulty working with the government of the PF. “I don’t think us, Tongas, we are going to tolerate such kind of language from politicians. These are the people who are saying ‘One Zambia, One Nation’ and the same people are now insulting other tribes! How are we going to maintain ‘One Zambia, One Nation’ if we start insulting other tribes? It doesn’t make sense,” lamented chief Simamba, adding that UPND and PF were not for Tongas, Bembas or Ngonis but for all Zambians. “My appeal is that I want, on behalf of other chiefs and everybody in Southern Province, the President to discipline the secretary general. If anything, let him be fired so that other people will learn a lesson because if he (President Lungu) does not do that, we’ll have difficulties, as people of Southern Province, working with the government of the day. If the President fires him, we’ll know that he is not for that idea but if he keeps quiet, then we’ll have problems believing him.” Chief Nalubamba of Namwala district said Chama’s remarks would discourage Tongas from joining the ruling party. “It is very shallow to insult other tribes just because you are in power. If anything, it does not bring supporters near your party. That is the worst that can come from a high-profile leader; he is a shallow leader, do you hear me?” stressed chief Nalubamba. “You need these people to be your supporters; whether you like it or not [but] how do you attract them to your party with insults of that nature? I want President Lungu to know that some of these leaders he has are very shallow [and] they are deliberately doing this to discourage people from joining the PF. You can’t keep such a shallow and primitive leader, who is going round insulting the people. The President should know that if he wants that party to be progressive, he needs progressive leaders, not leaders who go round insulting the people. The man (Chama) is very shallow indeed and I don’t think he is going to be welcome in Southern Province… Is he sure that the entire Southern Province is anti-PF? They have got even an MP in Livingstone (Evans Lawrence); he didn’t vote for himself and they have got a councillor in Namwala, did he vote for himself? The least I can say about that man is that he is a shallow leader and shallow thinker!” And chief Chipepo of Gwembe district pointed out that Chama’s sentiments showed that there are some leaders in PF who are demon-possessed. “We called some Bemba chiefs about this issue but they said they don’t have any idea where this hatred is coming from. He didn’t insult (Tonga) politicians but he is insulting Tonga chiefs because they are the custodians of the people of Southern Province,” said chief Chipepo. “He has insulted the Bantu Botatwe and he is not fit to be a leader. They are demon-possessed; tell them that’s what I have said. Since they are demon-possessed, they should not be left to terrorise a tribe… I phoned Ngoni chiefs and they told me that they (Ngonis) don’t have any problem with Tongas.” Meanwhile, chief Mukuni of Kazungula district said the PF secretary general should be fired because he is a liability to President Lungu. “It’s like he is in a wrong position. Only a person who is not in a responsible position could talk the way he is talking. It’s time that the PF began to take stock of its leaders. Chama is not building, he is destroying him (President Lungu) because there could even be some sympathetic Tongas whom he is denying now who would want to vote for the PF,” he said. “The man is costing the PF votes… he is a liability; he should be shown the way out so that he can go and answer charges for gun-totting (laughs). The moment he is dropped, the police will be on him.” Chief Mukuni said Zambians were not looking for a president from a particular tribe but a qualified and capable Zambian to be Head of State. “We are not looking for a Bemba or Lozi president but a Zambian president who can come from any of the 73 tribes. We should not be saying this tribe cannot produce a president and this tribe can. That is not being One Zambia One Nation. I think that the job is too big for him (Chama), he is an embarrassment to the presidency,” said chief Mukuni

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