It was irresponsible tribal talk, Kalaba tells off 7 Ministers



IT WAS irresponsible for seven ministers from one region to hold a press briefing for the sole purpose of condemning a particular ethnic grouping, Citizens First President Harry Kalaba has said.

And Mr Kalaba has urged the police to summon Minister of Youth and Sport Elvis Nkandu for inciting hate against one ethnic grouping.

But the Patriotic Front (PF) says the best way to curtail the growing tribal sentiments is to stop talking about the vice and that the debate should not be given life by perpetuating the discussion.

PF acting president Given Lubinda when called to comment on the matter said he was not willing to discuss the tribal talk because that would be exacerbating the vice. 

“The best way to stop the tribal talk is not to talk about it all. If I comment, another person will comment and to me, this tribal talk is a non-issue which does not deserve to be given life by continue talking about it. So if all of us continue talking about it, then we will not stop tribalism,” Mr Lubinda said.

Early this week, seven Bemba ministers held a press briefing with Minister of Informational and Media Chushi Kasanda in Lusaka at which they condemned tribalism and denounced Bembas.

But Mr Kalaba condemned the press briefing as irresponsible because it only promoted the same tribalism it was purported to be condemning. 

He was speaking on Hot FM radio station on Wednesday evening. 

“There was no need for those seven ministers, all of them coming from one region, beginning to talk against one ethnic grouping. The ministers should have named the individuals promoting tribalism instead of attacking an entire ethnic grouping. In fact, what they were doing was promoting tribalism. It does not have to take people coming from the Northern region to talk about tribalism,” Mr Kalaba said.

And Mr Kalaba has urged the police to summon Mr  Nkandu for promoting hate speech against Bembas.

During the briefing Mr Nkandu castigated Bembas for being “selfish” and behaving as if they had the monopoly on wisdom.

“Elvis Nkandu, Minister of You and Sport, must be summoned for inciting tribal talk. The way he was talking, he was not distinguishing between speaking as minister and speaking as a party cadre,” Mr Kalaba said.

He said his party would revert to the system of deploying public service workers to regions from where they did not hail to promote national unity as was the case during first President Kenneth Kaunda’s administration. 

The press briefing has been widely condemned by Zambians as inflaming tribal hatred.


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