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HH CAN’T APOLOGISE TO CATHOLICS

By NATION REPORTER

PRESIDENT Hakainde Hichilema should personally be held accountable for the insults, disparaging remarks and invectives his cadres and minions have continued to spew on the leadership of the Catholic Church, Given Lubinda has said.

Mr Lubinda has said time for reckoning for President Hichilema and his minions is fast nearing and that those in the UPND, who had given themselves the latitude of insulting and demeaning the Catholic priests and Bishops shall soon be gnashing their teeth.  

Mr Lubinda, a Catholic devotee said in an interview that it was not surprising that President Hichilema had refused to apologise  to the Catholic Church for the insults and abuse the priests and Bishops had been subjected to because the head of State had sanctioned such insolence from his supporters and cadres.

(i) In May last years, Batuke Imenda, the UPND secretary general branded the Archbishop of Lusaka Dr Alick Banda Lucifer and when the Catholic Church through the Zambia Conference of Catholic Bishops (ZCCB) demanded for an apology, they were largely ignored.

(ii) Cornelius Mweetwa, the Information and Media Minister then promised government was going to invite the Catholic Church leadership to State House for a meeting with President Hichilema. It has never materialized.

(iii) Last week, Mark Simuwe, the UPND zealot launched yet another scathing attack at the Catholic Church, branding Archbishop Dr Banda a joker, reinstating President Hichilema’s position over the Catholic Church leadership.

“Let us not waster time asking President Hichilema to apologise to the Catholic Church for the insults and abuse its priests and Bishops have been subjected under his watch. President Hichilema is enjoying every moment his minions are insulting and disparaging the Catholic Church and its leadership and he therefore cannot apologise. That he has failed to reprimand Mr Imenda, Simuwe for abusing the Catholic leadership only means that he has approved of their conduct. He (Hichilema) does not have the conscious to realise that what his minions are doing is morally, political and spiritually wrong,” Mr Lubinda said.

Mr Lubinda however said President Hichilema should personally be held accountable for watching over his cadres abuse the Catholic Church and its leadership, warning that those who thought by demeaning the church would gain political mileage should examine the history of the church.

He said the Catholic Church had from time immemorial spoken against injustice and that there was never a time that the Bishops and priests had been so abused as it was under the UPND and President Hichilema.

“The Catholic Church spoke against UNIP and during those days, it was said that the priests were going to ride on their coronas had Dr Kenneth Kaunda won the 1991 early general elections. It came to pass that UNIP was voted out. Then came the AMMD that was constantly kept under check by the Catholic Church but was not insulted or abused,” Mr Lubinda said.

“And if there is any governing party that was put under heavy scrutiny was the PF under President Edgar Lungu. Former President Lungu was heavily criticized by the Catholic Church but we never saw any leader insulting the church leadership to the extent that is happening under President Hichilema,” Mr Lubinda said.

He said it was a waste of time for Zambians and indeed the Catholic Church to expect an apology from President Hichilema because the head of State had an ego that could anly appreciate praise-singing.     

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