By Edwin Mbulo in Livingstone
WE should not let the UPND government go astray, says senior chief Mukuni.
And chief Mukuni has advised thieves in the former government to return what they stole to avoid being jailed.
In an interview, Mukuni of Livingstone, Kazungula and Zimba districts, said traditional leaders’ role was to point out the wrongs that the government might end up doing.
“We can only hope the current government won’t do what the previous government was doing. If we see them going astray, we have the right to remind them. We should not let them go astray…we should not be cowardly,” Mukuni said.
On President Hakainde Hichilema demanding the return of stolen state properties and moneys, Mukuni commended the Head of State over the issue.
He said some people misunderstand President Hichilema when he said that he will not go for retribution.
“They (UPND government) may not throw them into jail, but they want to recover the stolen money. To me that is the way to go. If they did that (not jailing thieves), it is going to create a bad foundation for politicians, who may think that even if they stole they won’t be arrested,” he said.
“But if they returned what belongs to the people, they should not be jailed. If they built houses, let those be seized,” Mukuni said.
He warned the UPND against: “Using political power to torment others like the PF government did. We need fair treatment.”
Mukuni further advised the judiciary not to let thieves scot free even when it was evident that a crime was committed as was seen in the PF regime.
He pointed out that certain judgments clearly showed that they were bought.
“We appeal to them to play their proper role,” said Mukuni.
On the House of Chiefs, Mukuni said he would personally not seek a seat in the house but was quick to add that he would attend its first meeting under the UPND-Alliance government so as to assist mentor some of the many new traditional leaders.
He said the House of Chiefs should not be the kind to be swayed by politicians but should stand their ground.
Mukuni was an ardent critic of President Edgar Lungu and the PF government which led to the former Head of State snub him at many events in Livingstone despite him saying he was merely trying to make a good leader out of former President.
He had to go underground for some time especially after his wife Veronica was arrested and slapped with a charge of allegedly abducting some Hatembo family members.
The State has since discontinued the matter through a Nolle Prosequi, forcing the Queen to comment that: “I am halfway happy.”