UPND president Hakainde Hichilema has accused President Edgar Lungu of bad diplomatic etiquettes towards the international community, saying his stance will adversely affect the socio-economic outlook of the country.
Speaking during a media briefing at the party’s national campaign centre yesterday, Mr. Hichilema said President Lungu’s canning of the diplomatic community, for meddling in the affairs of the country by siding with The Post newspaper for evading tax had put the country’s foreign direct investments at risk.
He said as chief diplomat of the country, President Lungu needed to exercise caution in the way he related with the members of the diplomatic community because his strong stance could lead the country into serious consequences.
“Mark my words. It will not be long before the Kwacha start depreciating further because of the way President Lungu is handling the international community and when the Kwacha depreciates, just know that you will have to pay more for the commodities because we are an import-oriented country.
“It was sad that he could call the diplomats to State House and talk to them in the manner he did because that poses a threat to direct foreign investment in the country. He is creating a bad picture of Zambia as well as for local investment,” said Mr. Hichilema.
He maintained that The Post newspaper was being persecuted by Governmnet because it wanted to cripple an independent voice for the opposition political parties so that their campaign messages could not be accessed by the Zambian people.
And some opposition political parties earlier yesterday held a meeting at the Zambia Episcopal Conference (ZEC) headquarters at which they demanded, among other things, to have The Post editor-in-chief Fred M’membe, his wife Mutinta, and deputy managing editor Joseph Mwenda released from police custody where they were until last evening.