Mumbi Phiri
Mumbi Phiri

By Lambwe Kachali

Ruling PF deputy general secretary Mumbi Phiri says there is no way Chishimba Kambwili can call for a total lockdown, because even umusungu (whiteman) Tony Blair has refused.

And Phiri has taken issue with opposition UPND national chairperson Mutale Nalumango’s refering to President Edgar Lungu as simply Edgar.

Featuring on Radio Phoenix’s Let the People Talk Radio programme this morning, Phiri said she was listening to former British Prime minister Tony Blair on BBC, where he said that he did not agree that Africa was in a position to allow a lockdown in view of the coronavirus pandemic. She therefore wondered why some opposition leaders, who were in total lockdown themselves – in apparent reference to National Democratic Congress (NDC) leader Chishimba – could call for a lockdown.

Phiri said the opposition leader did not mean well, saying he should stay in the comfort of his home and allow people to continue with their business.

“Umusungu akana uyo (The whiteman Tony Blair has refused a lockdown for African countries)…I am sure you have listened to that BBC report,” Phiri said, adding that the whites were surprised with Africa’s response to the virus, saying they thought the Continent would be overwhelmed. “Even us (blacks) who look down on ourselves we are going to give ourselves a pat on the back.”

On the re-opening of schools, Phiri said she was glad the children were going back to school as “we have been told that this Covid is here to stay”.

She said if parents were not happy with the opening of schools, the best they could do was to stop their children from reporting to school, saying that would send a message to the government.

On accusations leveled against the ruling PF by UPND that they were buying their councillors to defect to the ruling party, Phiri said the UPND were accusing PF of something they were accustomed to themselves, claiming that even late Request Muntanga’s seat was sold to the highest bidder.

Phiri said she felt sorry for the “MMD members” in the UPND like Situmbeko Musokotwane and Professor Geoffrey Lungwangwa, among others.

“If they are shouting at your friends who have come to PF, then where have they put you?”she asked.

And Phiri said she did not imply that UPND leader used vulgar language when his programme on ISO FM, in Isoka was violently disrupted by suspected PF thugs, but she took issue with the manner Nalumango referred to President Lungu.

“There is no way Nalumango can refer to President Lungu as just Edgar. You can only refer like that to your boy friend,” said Phiri, adding that Nalumango was not properly cultured.

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