By Bennie Mundando
WE are shocked and extremely worried over the level of hatred and divisive politics the retired Archbishop of Lusaka Telesphore Mpundu is exhibiting against our party and President Lungu, Lusaka Province Patriotic Front (PF) secretary Kennedy Kamba has said.
Speaking to The Scoop this morning, Mr. Kamba says the PF is perplexed that today, Archbishop Mpundu can issue a statement claiming that that President Lungu’s Government is worse than colonialism.
He wonders how the PF Government of President Lungu is worse than colonialism, when Archbishop Mpundu is enjoying his fundamental freedoms of expression, even going to extremes of attacking President Lungu and his Government.
He says the PF respects Archbishop Mpundu as a shepherd and parent but expects him to conduct himself in such a manner as opposed to issuing provocative statements which are inaccurate and insensitive.
“We know Archbishop Mpundu supports the opposition UPND but he should not be insinuating that the Church is behind him or try to portray himself as such. The Church is nonpartisan but what is coming out of the Archbishop is very divisive and unacceptable. We warn Archbishop Mpundu to retreat because he is not beyond reproach.
“The PF is doing everything possible to restore the dignity of this country and to shape its democracy and good governance. There is no way we can be compared to colonial masters. This is hate speech coming from the Archbishop and it is regrettable. We urge him to retract his statement and apologise to the Head of State,” Mr. Kamba said.
He says if Archbishop Mpundu meant well considering he is a prominent figure in the country and in the Church, he should have been using proper and dignified channels of communication if he wanted to advise President Lungu or if he was aggrieved over something.
He says Archbishop knows very well that even at State House, doors are wide open for him if he wants to see President Lungu and share his grievances and misgivings if any.
“We respect the Church and its establishment and we have a right to respond to Archbishop Mpundu. He has been very unfair to the PF. He does not even talk about the wrongs of the UPND and their misconduct. He is partisan for his own interests.
“We repeat our earlier call that we respect the Catholic Church and we respect even Archbishop Mpundu. All we are asking is that the clergyman must begin to play his unifying role and be a peacemaker. These provocations coming from him are unwarranted.
“Let peace prevail and we hope Archbishop Mpundu can make another turn in life and stop the kind of politics he is playing and be the man of God, a unifying factor that this country can count on,” he said.