PRESIDENT Edgar Lungu has called on Zambians to give his government a fresh mandate in the August 12, 2021 general elections.
The Head of State said with confidence that difficult days are coming to an end.
Speaking when he launched the PF 2021 to 2026 manifesto at Mulungushi International Conference Centre in Lusaka yesterday, President Lungu thanked Zambians for electing him in 2016, adding that better days were coming.
“We have worked hard and done the best that we could. We yet call upon you to give us a fresh mandate and I call tell you we shall not disappoint you. With the work we have done so far, I can state with confidence that the difficult days are coming to an end; better days are coming,” he said.
The President said the launch of the manifesto was meant to renew his government’s covenant with the Zambian people.
“The launch of this document obviously, coincides with the forthcoming election. It is meant to renew our covenant with the Zambian people, apart from the fact that we, as a party, are in competition with other political parties to lead this great nation. The difference however, with our opponents is that we are a tested and experienced party whose mission is to continue developing our great nation. This is why the theme of the manifesto I launch today is ‘Making Every Zambian Count, Continuity for a Prosperous, Peaceful, Stable and an all-inclusive Zambia’,” he said.
And President Lungu said it was not debatable that economies around the world are going through turbulent times, more so because of the COVID-19 pandemic, and Zambia is no exception.
“We are going through hard times. We have experienced the weakening of the Kwacha as well as high prices of commodities,” he said. “Added to this situation is the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on key sectors of our economy leading to reduced employment opportunities. Against this background is the work we have done during or close to 10 years in office as a Patriotic Front government. We have invested heavily in infrastructure development which has seen the transformation of our country through roads, bridges, schools, universities, hospitals, among other. We have invested in building hydro-power stations which has seen the reduction in the deficit for electricity.”
Meanwhile, the Head of State observed that the participation of Zambians in the national economy was very low.
“The participation of Zambians in sectors such as mining, finance, construction, real estate and trading, to mention but a few is negligence,” he said.
President Lungu said going forward, the government shall undertake a comprehensive review of the Citizen Economic Empowerment Act and the Zambia Development Agency Act to facilitate empowerment interventions for businesses where a threshold of equity is owned by citizens.
He said the government shall also provide incentives for Zambians to set up trading businesses, especially in towns and rural areas and also reserve all government funded procurement and construction projects for Zambians, save for those where the citizens may have no competence or projects area externally funded, among others.
And President Lungu has directed party secretary general Davies Mwila to ensure that all candidates at local government, mayoral and parliamentary levels obtain copies of the manifesto and campaign in their respective areas based on it.
“The manifesto must be taken and treated as a Patriotic Front ‘Bible’ or ‘Quran’ before, during and after the August 2021 national vote because it is from which the Patriotic Front policies will be based,” said President Lungu.
Credit: Daily Star Zambia