ZAFFICO sold-UPND

News

By Staff Writer
UPND says the protests in Kitwe and Kalulushi over the alleged sale of ZAFFICO should not be ignored.

UPND Secretary General Stephen Katuka said PF cannot be trusted anymore.

Mr Katuka said recently when there was a rumour of fuel hike, Government said the fuel hiking was just a rumour but two days later fuel was hiked.

“Edgar Lungu’s Spokesman Amos Chanda and IDC Public Relations Manager Namakau Mukelabai say ZAFFICO is not being sold but just being listed on the Lusaka Stock Exchange.

“What ignorance is that? Shares are listed on a stock exchange for purposes of selling and buying. So people’s suspicions that ZAFFICO is up for sale has an element of truth. The Chinese can still buy the ZAFFICO shares even on the Lusaka Stock Exchange. The Chinese are the ones that are most interested in Zambia’s timber industry and ZAFFICO,” he said.

He said President Edgar Lungu should not mortgage Zambia to Chinese investors.

Mr Katuka said the protests  that took place on the Copperbelt over the alleged sale of ZAFFICO earlier this week should not  be taken as a mere  protest against the Chinese.

Mr Katuka said the protests must be taken as a protest against the corrupt Patriotic Front (PF) that has allowed China to take over Zambia’s sovereignty.

He said that there is no smoke without fire.

“Whatever President Edgar Lungu owes China, whether economically or politically should not be the reason for him to indirectly mortgage the country. The challenge we have with PF is that they are blackmailing citizens every time serious questions are raised by the citizens.

“It has become fashionable for the PF and its government to blame the UPND for their failure to run government properly. Citizens have for a long time raised questions about the Chinese and Zambia’s natural resources, including land and the mukula tree. Zambians saw for themselves law enforcement agencies confiscating timber from citizens and selling it to the Chinese.

“Government has since informed Zambians through Parliament that the money realised from the sale of the mukula tree been given to ZAFFICO. Then suddenly, people have picked up information that ZAFFICO is up for grabs and will be sold to the Chinese. That has annoyed the people,” he said.

He wondered if the people need the UPND to incite them to protest over the looting of national assets.

Mr Katuka said if ZAFFICO is not up for sale, then Zambians ough to know what is happening to its shares.

“Edgar Lungu’s Spokesman Amos Chanda and IDC Public Relations Manager Namakau Mukelabai say ZAFFICO is not being sold but just being listed on the Lusaka Stock Exchange.

“What ignorance is that? Shares are listed on a stock exchange for purposes of selling and buying. So people’s suspicions that ZAFFICO is up for sale has an element of truth. The Chinese can still buy the ZAFFICO shares even on the Lusaka Stock Exchange. The Chinese are the ones that are most interested in Zambia’s timber industry and ZAFFICO,” he said.

He said UPND shares the same concerns of the people on the Copperbelt on the impending sale of ZAFFICO.

The UPND CEO said people of Zambia have the right to know what is happening to their resources.

“It is immoral for government to begin giving all the national assets to Chinese. We are not against the Chinese, but we are against the PF style of leadership given the rate at which they are giving up land and companies to the Chinese nationals.

We want to warn that we shall not also sit back and watch government mortgaging the country to China with impunity. Zambians have the constitutional right to demonstrate against government way of running the country. Threatening UPND leaders with investigations or arrests will not take away the citizens constitutional rights to protect and defend their natural resources. We demand sanity in the running of institutions in the country,” he said.

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