Sports fans have roundly condemned International Fellowship of Christian Churches (IFCC) president Bishop Simon Chihana for backing Lusaka City Council (LCC) move to sell play parks without allegedly following procedure.
Chihana told the Daily Nation last week that the council was in order to sell the Libala land to pay back debts that the local authority owed other institutions and former employees.
He explained that there was nothing wrong in disposing of some of properties such as play parks if the reason behind was to off-set some of the debts that the institution had.
But the Zambia Sports Fans’ Association (ZFSA)told the Daily Nation that churches should desist from talking about issues they did not understand for the sake of calming the situation while shielding perpetrators of land scams across the country.
ZFSA patron Peter Makembo said Chihana was off-side to back the council on that issue because the contention was not on the sale of non-performing facilities to raise money but the procedure used and who benefitted from such sales.
Makembo appealed to the clergy not to be drawn into issues they did not understand because that had an adverse effect on the accountability of the people entrusted with civil responsibility.
Chihana had observed that even though there was a public outcry in the manner some assets were sold, the local authority had no option but to sell such facilities which were non-productive in order to address the financial quagmire that had engulfed the institution.
Chihana explained that the contentious Libala land saga had been blown out of proportion by some people who had failed to consider the economic value it would add to both the council and the local community in Kabwata.
He observed that once the Chinese, who are said to have bought the land put up a mega structure in Libala, the council would benefit through revenue collection, while the shopping mall will create employment opportunities to the locals. Makembo said the public outcry was not as a result of hatred for council officers but was being made in the best interest of the community, which he said may never have access to the facility, despite assurances from the council that it will be open to the public for free.