By BENNIE MUNDANDO
THERE is no justification in the opposition’s machinations to punish children whose parents cannot afford to buy books for them by calling for an end to the distribution of free books by Government simply because they have President Edgar Lungu’s portrait, governance activist David Kapoma has charged.
Speaking to the Daily Nation, Mr. Kapoma said there was nothing wrong with President Lungu to print books with his portrait which are being distributed in schools for free because previous Governments had used the same initiative to supplement their free education policy.
He wondered why the same politicians who were today demonising President Lungu saw nothing wrong with books that were distributed by previous Governments.
He said it was unfortunate that the opposition in Zambia had abandoned their role of providing checks and balances to those in power and providing alternative governance through provision of solutions to challenges facing the country.
He said while his organisation expected opposition political parties to appreciate such a gesture, it was saddened to learn that some of them were now playing politics over such a positive gesture.
“The only difference is that while books we were getting some years back which were donated by Government in schools for free did not have a portrait of the president, the ones being distributed in schools currently have that.
Should we now play politics because these books have President Lungu’s portrait? How will that help the poor Zambians who are in dire need of education?” Mr. Kapoma asked.
He advised political party leaders not to be petty by abandoning their role of providing alternative leadership and dwell on petty issues which had no bearing on the development of the country.
“Politics is about service provision to the people regardless of whether someone is in power or not but what we are getting from the opposition is contrary to their core business of their existence,” he said.