The Edgar Lungu-led Patriotic Front (PF) vice president, Given Lubinda, has called on President Hakainde Hichilema to abandon his trip in the United Arab Emirates.
Lubinda said this would give him time to mourn with the families that lost their beloved ones in the open pit mine accident in Chingola on the Copperbelt Province.
Addressing Journalists at a media briefing in Lusaka on Saturday, Lubinda said Hichilema should have also considered to declare a national disaster like what first Republican President Kenneth Kaunda did in 1970.
The Edgar Lungu PF vice president described as totally diabolical the minimal attention being given to the mining disaster that had claimed multiple lives in Chingola.
Lubinda also wondered why Vice President Mutale Nalumango was in Lusaka and not in Chingola to commensurate with the families of the victims of the disaster.
“Where is she? She’s acting President and here in Lusaka instead of going to communicate with the people in Chingola,” he said.
Lubinda expressed worry over the manner the Chingola open pit mine disaster was being handled by the country’s leadership.
“President Hakainde is in Dubai, having meetings in Dubai instead of coming back to Zambia to come and face the challenges people are facing, the lives that are lost in Chingola, are Zambian lives and there is nothing more precious than one Zambian life,” he stated.
He further said that with the number of people that have been lost it was expected of the President to prioritize mourning with Zambians as the occurrence was a national disaster.
“President Hichilema was in Dubai, having meetings in Dubai instead of coming back to Zambia to come and face the challenge that his people are facing,” Lubinda added.
He recalled that last time something similar happened was during the reign of First Republican President Kaunda and the then head of state left everything he was doing in order to mourn with the Zambians.
“Kaunda had to leave whatever he was doing, he went and camped on the Copperbelt for a week and went and visited the homes of every victim and yet today, this is the third day going, we haven’t heard about any political leadership that has been provided in Chingola,” Lubinda said.
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