By disparaging the blind as being visionless and therefore clueless has sealed the fate of UPND opposition leader Hakainde Hichilema.
Angry members from the Zambia Agency for Persons With Disabilities (ZAPWD) have charged that it was insensitive and a mark of absolute cruelty to suggest that the blind were visionless and yet they were leading lives in difficult conditions because most of them were born in circumstances over which they had no control.
Sixty-five year old Marita Chabu Ngandwe said recent statements by HH that President Edgar Lungu had no vision like a blind person stigmatized the visually impaired and did not speak well of his regard for the handicapped.
Ms Ngandwe said the fact that he had refused to apologise for the statement he made against the visually impaired, was a clear indication that he was not only arrogant, selfish, but had no regard for other people’s feelings, therefore, could not make a good leader.
Opposition UPND leader Hakainde Hichilema she said was a cursed person because he had no regard for people with disabilities as evidenced by his disparaging remarks he recently made against the visually impaired.
Ms Ngandwe, resident at Kangonga Production Centre said the visually impaired people were hurt especially that he had even refused to apologise for his careless statement.
“Any person who injures others in any way, should apologise, but Mr Hichilema has not apologised to the blind for that stigmatising statement which he made. His failure to apologise shows that he has no humility. He is full of himself and does not care about other people’s feelings.
“If he does not care about other people’s feelings, how can he rule this country? For us, as the blind, we think, he (Mr Hichilema) is a cursed person because he has no regard for people with disabilities as evidenced by his disparaging remarks he recently made against the blind,” Ms Ngandwe said.
She urged Zambians to vote for President Edgar Lungu on August 11 because he had demonstrated that he had the heart for the disabled by supporting them in various ways through the Presidential Empowerment Initiative Fund (PEIF).
Recently the Presidential Empowerment Initiative Fund (PEIF) Fund Manager Joseph Chilinda and Patron of Marketeers and Vendors handed over 12 bicycles to the visually impaired and people with disabilities at Kang’onga Production Centre.
The people with disabilities, who run small businesses at the centre, used guides, to help them use the bicycles for transport to go and buy merchandise to sell from Ndola town centre.
With the support of the bicycles from the PEIF, they would not be spending money on transport to buy merchandise for sale at the centre.