By SIMON MUNTEMBA
HAKAINDE Hichilema cannot be trusted with the affairs of Zambia, which is a Christian nation, because he does not respect spiritual gatherings, the Christian Coalition Zambia has said.
Coalition president, Charles Mwape said it was unfortunate that the UPND leader has continued shunning all spiritual gatherings for reasons best known to himself.
But UPND spokesperson Cornelius Mweetwa said he had not seen the invitation while secretary general Batuke Imenda said he was too busy to respond to our query.
However, the Zambia Centre for Inter-Party Dialogue (ZCID) Executive Director Doreen Kabwe confirmed sending the invitation to all political parties including the UPND.
His remarks comes after Mr Hichilema shunned yesterday’s National Prayer Initiative for Peaceful Elections at Anglican Cathedral of the Holy Cross.
The national prayers were focused on praying for all candidates, for peaceful elections and issue-based campaigns ahead of the August 12 general elections and the mainstream churches in association with the Ministers Fellowship across Zambia organised the prayers at constituency and district levels which were held countrywide.
In an interview, Professor Mwape said it was unfortunate that Mr Hichilema snubbed the prayer meeting despite it being organised by the church.
“For us as Christian coalition, we are disappointed that HH has continued to politicize spiritual gatherings in the Christian nation. We therefore advise Zambians that HH is a wrong person who should not be allowed to rule this country and we are going to de-campaign him because he is a danger to the declaration of this country as a Christian nation,” Professor Mwape said.
In this country, he said, we are not going to allow anyone who offers himself or herself for political office but does not respect spiritual gathering to rule us. To him everything is politics, we were expecting him to attend but we have marked his absenteeism.
“We are going in every province to tell the Zambian people that leaders that have not honored God are wrong people to lead the nation. A Christian nation should be led by a person who obeys spiritual gathering,” he said.
Meanwhile, speaking after attending the national prayers, President Edgar Lungu wondered why political party cadres have continued to engage in violence when their leaders were not physically fighting each other.
President Lungu said it does not make sense for political party cadres to be hacking each other when the children of their leaders were kept safe and away from political violence.
Mr Lungu who reiterated his commitment to defend and uphold peace so as to maintain the country’s unmatched record as a beacon of peace challenged the media and Zambians at large to question the motive behind continued violence by cadres when their leaders were not fighting at all.
“Let’s find out why they fight when us leaders we don’t fight. We leaders lead by example, but we wonder why they fight. For example, this guy (UNIP president Bishop Trevor Mwamba). Bishop Mwamba was my classmate and I don’t think we ever fight. Wynter Kabimba is also my former classmate, we did our law school and graduated together, we are friends. So why should our followers fight?” he asked.
Delivering a homily, Pentecostal Assemblies of God Bishop (PAOG) Bishop Harrison Sakala urged Zambians to always have a good motive for whatever they were doing.
Bishop Sakala said churches and citizens remain hopeful that the elections will be held in a peaceful manner and that the results will be credible and acceptable to all concerned.
He however called for love and unity among the Zambian citizens before, during and after elections.
Other notable opposition political party leaders that attended the prayers were UNIP’s Bishop Trevor Mwamba, Dr Nevers Mumba of MMD, Zambia Republic Party’s Wright Musoma and Peter Chanda of New Congress Party among others.
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