Zambia Reports (Lusaka)

11 February 2013

Zambia: Why Is Sata Hiding Behind His Wife?

Many Zambians have been wondering the deafening silence of President Michael Sata since the country lost 51 people in a tragic accident in Chibombo district involving a Post Bus, a truck and a Land Cruiser last Thursday.

After issuing the usual and traditional statement expressing condolences for the bereaved family, many Zambians were hoping that President Sata will visit the scene of the accident particularly that it happened a few kilometers away from State House.

Considering that the accident happened around 07:30 hours while the President was in the country, it looked like a natural reaction for President Sata.

The President was not out of the country, as a hobby that he is developing, and the country did not hear of any public engagement in which he was involved. He only proceeded to conduct a swearing in ceremony without due regard to the calamity that had beset the country.

Much as the people overlooked the first day, they still hoped that the President would visit some funeral houses especially in Ndola where the mass burial is taking place on Monday. Instead, he has sent his wife, Dr Christine Sata as his emissary.

This is the Sata, while in opposition, suddenly became the most compassionate people of our time. He would condemn the late president Levy Mwanawasa and his successor Rupiah Banda the same things, if not lesser evils, he seems to be embracing with pride.

But the question remains, why is President Sata hiding behind his wife's skirt? Some people decided to give him the benefit of doubt when others questioned why he never visited the accident scene.

Perhaps, the President is still recuperating from the minor heart surgery he underwent in United Kingdom recently that he does not want to share with people that voted him into power. President Sata should take a leaf from Venezuela President Hugo Chavez who has openly spoken about his cancer and this has attracted public sympathy for him.

Like Benson Kabanda observed, "what can be more important at this particular moment than this disaster that has fallen on our nation? If he can no longer carry out the duties of the Head of State, it is only fair that he steps down. Words are powerful and they have a tendency to boomerang. He kept calling late president Mwanawasa a 'cabbage' some time back but time is slowly revealing who the real cabbage is. You have to stand up as a leader in such difficult moments because it is you that people voted for and not your wife Sir."

Dr Kaseba has visited funeral homes for deceased in Ndola's Kansensi, Lubuto and Pamodzi residential areas ahead of the mass burial today. Sata is expected in Ndola for the mass burial today.

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