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Let us work hard, amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, observe the health guidelines, President Edgar Lungu says

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PRESIDENT Edgar Lungu says citizens, including those working from home because of the COVID-19 pandemic, must work hard so that the country’s economy is not negatively impacted.
The President cautioned that “working from home” is different from  “staying at home”, and, therefore, citizens working from home must use the available ICT tools and work hard rather than deciding to abandon work.
He said from last year’s experience, many citizens who were asked to work from home decided to stay at home and abandoned work.
The President said abandoning work when allowed to work from home will not just negatively affect productivity but will impact, negatively, the country’s economy.
“Whether you are in informal or formal sector and you have been made to work from home, work the way you would work at your place of work apply seriousness for what you do despite operating from home.
“Those who are positive with covid-19 but are asymptomatic or are showing little symptoms must equally work hard from home and must not abandon the work they do. Do your normal chores, while observing the recommended health guidelines,” the President says.
And the President has encouraged people engaged in farming to ensure they visit their farms regularly, despite the surging cases of ,COVID-19, so that the country continues to do well in food production and security.
He said like all citizens, farmers need to observe the COVID-19 health guidelines of wearing masks, social distancing, hand sanitising, and steaming
among others, but should not abandon their fields.
President Lungu said he visited a farm recently where owners had not been to their field in fear of the COVID-19 pandemic and in their absence army worms attacked their produce.
The President adds that the World Bank’s Enabling Business of Agriculture 2019 (EBA19) Report, launched last Thursday, places Zambia third in Sub Saharan Africa, among the top countries that are encouraging the private sector to invest in agriculture.
“My government has done very well in regulations relating to speedy supply of seeds, registering fertilisers, securing water, sustaining livestock and accessing finance, among other thematic successes, and hence scoring 63.73 from a possible 100, which is way above the regional average,” the President says.
The President adds, “Therefore, this is a big score by Zambia as we are only behind South Africa and Kenya in Sub-Saharan Africa, and this is because of administration’s performance in Agriculture.
We can only push ourselves to be the best, but if we renege because of covid-19, agriculture production will drop and the consequences on the economy and our people will be dire,” he said.
The President adds, “, therefore, want to encourage all households to work hard amidst the covicd-19 pandemic and engage in some farming activity so that we end hunger and create capital for ourselves from the surplus that we  Produce.
This is according to a statement issued by special assistant to the President for press and public relations Isaac Chipampe.

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President Hakainde Hichilema to attend state funeral of late Namibian President Hage G. Geingob in Windhoek

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PRESIDENT Hakainde Hichilema is tomorrow expected to travel to Windhoek, Namibia on to attend the State Funeral of Dr Hage G.Geingob, late President of the Republic of Namibia.

In a statement issued by acting Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Mulambo Haimbe said the Memorial Service is scheduled for Saturday, 24th February 2024 at Independence Stadium with attendance anticipated from foreign Heads of State and Government alongside other invited dignitaries.

“The Burial Service will take place on Sunday, 25th February 2024 at Heroes Acre,” he said.

President Geingob, 82, passed away on 4th February 2024 in Namibia, having served as President of the Republic of Namibia from 2015 until his passing.

Mr Haimbe said President Hichilema is expected to return to Zambia immediately after his engagement.

(Mwebantu, Friday, 23rd February, 2024)

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Munir defies dress code,named and suspended from parliamentary proceedings

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BARELY 24 hours after Speaker Nelly Mutti’s directive against traditional wear in Parliament, Lumezi Member of Parliament  Munir Zulu has defied the order, leading to his suspension from Parliament.

The speaker has since named Mr Zulu for grossly disorderly behavior, stating that he had deliberately defied the guidance given yesterday.

This was after Mr Zulu was spotted in Parliament wearing a traditional attire of the people of Luapula.

“I am sure honourable member for Lumezi knows the dress code. And yesterday Members were guided so honourable member for Lumezi is deliberately defying the order and guidance given. Under the circumstances, honourable Member for Lumezi, I will name you,” she said.

“Mr Munir Zulu I find your behaviour grossly disorderly and sending you away for today’s sitting is insufficient. I therefore in accordance with standing order 208 name you,” she said.

Meanwhile, Vice President Mutale Nalumango says those threatening to have free education removed are irresponsible and should not be trusted.

Mrs Nalumango said free education is not an area to tamper with as it has given hope to many vulnerable children.

Mrs Nalumango was responding to a concern raised by Kabwe central Member of Parliament Chrizoster Phiri Halwindi during the Vice President question session ,who expressed concern by some leaders commenting that they will remove the free education policy.

However, Mrs Nalumango said it is unbelievable and saddening to hear some leaders utter such comments.

“It is actually unbelievable that any leader in any country would stand to fight free education.You truly want children to remain on the streets? You want the girl child to marry at 14-years old because they cannot go to school? You want boys to be fluffies or junkies? Free education has given hope, or did you want to be the only ones whose children go to school so that you continue to do wrong things? Therefore, it is irresponsible for anyone to declare that,” she said.

(Mwebantu, Friday, 23rd February, 2024)

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Speaker bars MPs from wearing Ngoni traditional headgear in Parliament.

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SPEAKER of the National Assembly Nelly Mutti has ordered Members of Parliament not to to wear the Nc’wala traditional ceremony head gear in the house as doing so is against parliamentary rules.

All roads are leading to the Eastern Province ahead of the ceremony taking place on Saturday.

Some MPs have been caught in the excitement to the extent of putting on the head gear in Parliament before being ruled out by the speaker.

Ms Mutti advised the MPs to show their support outside the house as standing order 206 (1) (C) does not allow for the wearing head gears in the house.

“Honourable members, I have one announcement to make to effect that it was observed yesterday during the sitting of the house that some members wire the Ngoni traditional head gear. This is possibly in support of the Nc’wala traditional ceremony scheduled to take place on Saturday, February 24th, 2024.

“”I wish to however, advise the house that standing order number 206 (1) (C) of the National Assembly standing orders 2021 is instructive of attire that is permissible. The provision allows members to wear decent traditional attire such as ‘Siziba’.

“[The] Decency of attire is a question of fact and maybe viewed differently especially if worn in an incomplete manner. I therefore find that the wearing of the Ngoni traditional head gear in the house was inappropriate in accordance with standing orders. Therefore I will not permit henceforth any honorable member to continue wearing such attires in the house,” Ms Mutti said.

Meanwhile, Minister of Local Government Garry Nkombo has said the national mourning declared in respect of the passing of President of Namibia Hage Geingob will not affect celebration of the Nc’wala traditional ceremony.

He made the announcement following a concern raised by his Chitambo counterpart, Remember Mutale, through a matter of urgent public importance.

(Mwebantu, Friday, 23rd February, 2024)

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