THE Anglican Church has eulogized Zambia for being a haven of peace and her abilities in maintaining political stability during political transitional times as well as in the economic and political development.
Visiting Anglican Church Archbishop of Canterbury Reverend Justin Portal Welby said Zambia had such a long history of peace in its development both democratically and politically, a feat he said some countries in the region and Africa as a whole had failed to achieve.
Archbishop Welby said Zambia had avoided the political mistakes other countries in the region and Africa had made and that was why the country had maintained peace even during times of transitions.
Archbishop Welby said this yesterday when he paid a courtesy call on President Edgar Lungu at State House.
He said the Church had remained the most effective arbiter in times of political conflicts in the world and was happy that the Anglican Church had continued playing its reconciliatory and ecclesiastical role in Zambia.
Archbishop Welby stated that brokering peace and reconciliation among political leaders in the world had remained the most common feature of the Church.
The Archbishop of Canterbury also observed that the current electricity deficit Zambia was facing was as a result of investment in the energy sector for a long time.
He said England had made a similar mistake in the 1980s when the country solely depended on oil but that the commodity was running out while the country had not harvested enough.
“You (Zambia) depended so much on hydro power which has been a big factor in the current electricity shortage and the general performance of the economy.
‘‘It was also a big mistake for us to depend on oil in the 1980s and it is now running out and we have not harvested enough,” Archbishop Welby said.
And President Lungu said the conomic challenges Zambia was facing were compounded by the fall in commodity prices on the global market.
President Lungu said Zambia had depended on copper for a long time and now that the prices of the metal had collapsed, the country had to look for altenative sources of finances to import electricity from other countries.
He said Zambia was spending a lot of money in importing electricity but that the country’s prayers were being answered as Zambia had received adequate rains albeit belatedly.
“It has also been a lesson for us not to depend exclusively on copper whose prices have fallen on the world market. We have had to look for alternative sources of money to import electricity and we are spending a lot. We are now getting more rains than we anticipated and we are heading towards harvesting and so we are blessed in both ways,” President Lungu said.
President Lungu commended the Anglican Church for its many social programmes in the county in sectors such as health and education among others.