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FORMER Defence Minister in the MMD government, George Mpombo, has commended former President Edgar Lungu for being a statesman whose contributions will put Zambia on the world map.

He said the inauguration of President Hakainde Hichilema yesterday which went on smoothly needed to be commended by all Zambians who treasured the peace of the country. Mr Mpombo said that Zambia had turned out to be an oasis of democracy as leaders had shown to be selfless for the sake of the millions of Zambians whose safety was paramount.

He said the smooth transition of power from the sixth president to the current one was a shining example that Zambia was truly an oasis of peace. Mr Mpombo said that due to the democratic dispensation in the country Zambia had now become a shining example in both the region and the world at large. “I must commend the outgoing president for showing high levels of maturity and selflessness by accepting defeat gracefully which was not an easy thing to do,’’ he said.

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Mr Mpombo said he was happy that the two individuals had managed to rise above their personal and political differences and putting Zambians’ interests first. He said President Lungu left the presidency with his head high and that it was up to President Hichilema to carry the baton and propel the country to greater heights.

Mr Mpombo said other countries were going through a lot of problems because leaders were finding it difficult to relinquish power which resulted in civil wars and other political turmoil. He called on the new president not to be vindictive but focus on delivering what the people of Zambia wanted.

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