Zambia Foreign Minister Harry Kalaba resigns over ‘greed’

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Zambia’s foreign minister has announced his resignation in a scathing Facebook post, decrying the country’s “path of insatiable greed and shame”.

Henry Kalaba said his decision was prompted by the “swelling” levels of corruption “perpetrated by those who are expected to be the solution”.

Analysts suspect the move is an attempt to pressure President Edgar Lungu, who is considering seeking a third term.

There is currently a two term limit in the Zambian constitution.

Mr Lungu, who has been accused of being increasingly authoritarian by his critics, is arguing in the courts that he could stand for a third term, as he only served part of his first term following the death of his predecessor, Michael Sata.

Mr Kalaba, an MP for the governing Patriotic Front (PF), is said to be a possible candidate for the 2021 presidential election, should Mr Lungu step aside, Reuters news agency reported.

“People have started realising that they will not get nominated as long as Lungu insists on standing.” Lee Habasonda, an analyst from the University of Zambia, told Reuters.

However, Mr Kalaba did not refer to his presidential ambitions in the Facebook post, instead focusing on what he says is growing corruption at the highest level, as well as his desire to serve his “country and its people” over “a position, party or person”.

“We need to go back to the original agenda of our party, the PF, where the poor and not the corporates must be at the centre of all our decisions,” Mr Kalaba wrote, going on to blame Zambia’s current financial woes on “collective carelessness and indifference”.

The post, which has prompted thousands of comments, concluded: “When people begin to feel overwhelmed by fear for speaking the truth, it is time to realize that critical fundamentals have shifted. We all have a role to play in making things right. This is my little contribution – Zambia is our country, we need and must reclaim it back.”

The president’s office says it has not yet received an official resignation letter.

 

-BBC

ABOUT: Nana Kwesi Coomson

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A Freelance Journalist, Entrepreneur and Philanthropist. Editor-in-Chief of www.233times.com. A contributory writer for Ghanaian Chronicle Newspaper. An alumnus of Adisadel College where he read General Arts. He holds first degree in Bachelor of Arts from the University of Ghana; Political Science (major) and History (minor). He has also pursued MSc Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Energy with Public Relations (PR) at the Robert Gordon University in the United Kingdom. He is a 2018 Mandela Washington Fellow (YALI) who studied at Clark Atlanta University on the Business and Entrepreneurship track. His mentors are Rupert Murdoch, Warren Buffet, Sam Jonah, Kwaku Sakyi Addo and Piers Morgan

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