Opinion

Cracking the Whip: Lungu’s Cabinet Reshuffle A Sweet Weekend Present

President Edgar Lungu has today made a shakeup to his Cabinet, a long awaited move that has got many Zambians excited, well, for obvious reasons. We actually began this week with a shock reshuffle at the Ministry of Finance which caught the entire nation by surprise. The Sunday reshuffle was announced at night – Margaret Mwanakatwe had been dropped and Dr Bwalya Ng’andu, who was the Bank of Zambia Deputy Governor, was appointed in her place.

In today’s reshuffles, Sports minister Moses Mawere has been fired while higher education minister Professor Nkandu Luo has been moved to Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries.

Transport Minister Dr Brian Mushimba becomes higher education minister while Mawere has been replaced by Ndola Central member of parliament Emmauel Mulenga.

Others are Minister in the office of the Vice President Sylvia Chalikosa who moves to works and supply while housing and infrastructure minister Ronald Chitotela moves to Ministry of Tourism. Vincent Mwale takes over from Chitotela as housing and infrastructure minister while Charles Banda who was at Tourism has moved to Local Government.

Works and supply minister Mutotwe Kafwaya moves to Ministry of Transport and Communication; fisheries and livestock minister Kampamba Mulenga Chewe moves to Ministry of Community Development while Olipa Phiri moves to the office of the Vice President.

In a statement issued by his press aide Isaac Chipampe today, President Edgar Lungu warned that he will not hesitate to kick out any minister who will not improve in their performance of duties. According to President Lungu, he wants to rejuvenate the performance of his ministers because overstaying in one position can ultimately affect their performance. The other key remark made by the President is the fact that some ministers have not been visiting their constituencies regularly to ensure government projects and programmes are implemented and monitored.

In all honesty, if we were to rate President Lungu’s performance this week based on these developments, we would actually give him a score of 9 out of 10. Ending the week on such a note gives the people hope that the Head of State desires the best for them, and that can only happen if his lieutenants, the ministers, perform to the expected levels.

Let us look at the President’s decision to fire the sports minister: Mawere called for this. His people in Chipata Constituency have for a very long time been complaining about how he hardly visits the area to check on them, and of course to see progress made on the many development projects that the government is undertaking. His explanation has always been that he was always busy attending to ministry duties. With the favour done to him by President Lungu, we are certain Mawere will now make his constituency his home, like many other PF members of parliament we know (some of whom have ministerial positions) that are regularly on the ground in their constituencies.

For Prof Luo, her movement from the Ministry of Higher Education was long overdue. She had created an environment where nobody in the sector could advise on how to approach this critical ministry. Prof Luo made a number of decisions that flouted the law while in that ministry. For instance, the suspension or intention to abolish student unions in universities and colleges was against the law. Secondly, her handling of student and lecturer affairs at UNZA and CBU has been one of the worst so far. Actually, her behaviour on some of the decisions made put into question the credentials she holds. Universities are among the most populated constituencies that can either make or break a government and it would have been impetuous for President Lungu to keep someone who was clearly making his government and party unpopular in areas that can give him massive votes at election time.

Let us come to Kampamba Mulenga Chewe. President Lungu has been noticing Kampamba’s dedication to community works in her constituency and other areas that have received support from the government through the Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries where she has been only for a short time. Kampamba is a good organizer; she is a real and strong politician. Community development suits her and we are 100 per cent sure she will fit in very well in this area. She has, in her community, been mobilizing her constituents and supporting them to undertake a variety of income generating activities. She is actually on the ground most of the time and knows her constituency like the back of her palm.

Another noteworthy decision is that of Dr Mushimba’s movement to the Ministry of Higher Education. This man is one of the most sober ministers President Lungu has and on this one, he has made an excellent pick for a higher education portfolio that requires a sober mind to handle lecturers and ‘troublesome’ students. With him in that ministry, there is hope that the CBU will be reopened after a sober discussion is held with the unions and management. He has welcomed this new challenge through a tweet saying “Extremely humbled and privileged to have served at MTC the last three years. I welcome the new challenge as I move to higher education. Among many pressing and immediate interventions, Re-opening CBU is a priority”.

 

Another minister who has hit the ground running is Vincent Mwale, who has equally tweeted “Ready for the new challenge, low cost housing is my priority”.

Lastly, let us look at the movement of Chitotela from the Ministry of Housing and Infrastructure Development to Tourism. The Pambashe member of parliament had in recent past come under fire from civil society, the opposition and other Zambians after the Anti-Corruption Commission arrested him on a charge of concealing property suspected to be proceeds of crime. They called for his removal or resignation from government, but none of these two happened. He was later acquitted by the court. Chitotela was in charge of a ministry that oversees all infrastructure projects we are seeing in this country – projects worth millions of dollars. His movement from this ministry is a good decision by President Lungu so that he can take a ‘break’ from one controversial ministry after his recent court cases.

 

42 Comments

  1. Kanyembo

    Out of ten,l give ECL 6/10,for not firing Chitotela.

  2. HH

    Why don’t you a point my MPs as ministers ? I think the government can function effectively …

    • Moses Phiri

      I don’t think the reshuffles are going to change anything. For us, the people of Mpatamato are happy you have removed Luo her position. Luo insulted us at our main market in the recent by-election of Roan constituency. The insults contributed to the loss of Lungus candidate.

  3. ecl

    this time around am not laughing any underperforming Minister ndetamfya full stop.

  4. Kambwili

    Kusekafye Zambia icalo cama Christian so mone kuno kkkkkkkkkkkkk mwaiseni mu Zambia

  5. Razor

    Old wine in new bottles. The wine still tastes the same. No difference!!

  6. Jomwa

    We go back to Petersen’s song ,Dear Mr president ,good move the president we can’t mention of one culprit who used to come at night to see the development ,well done

  7. Central power

    2 out of 10 why leaving Kampamba…. Luo …..chitotela……mawere…why again appointing Ndola central who has never kicked a ball.missing his excellence mr levy Patrick mwanawasa……Zambiaaaaaaa.

  8. Daniel Banda

    As far as making the PF unpopular in the Constituents the professor tops them all.

  9. Musendo Morris

    y Leaving Vincent Mwale Another Cowprit He Should Nt B Twting Ready For New Chalenge While He Does Not Visit His People. Ask Him When Last He Came To Chipangali.Surely One Day Izakwana Time Yake Otherwise We Are Tired Of Him.

  10. Wilson wanja

    We need new ministers with effective and efficient leadership.CONCERNED CITIZEN

  11. One love

    Carefully with the respect they give you there are not all to your side.meno mafupa fire them that’s when they will respect you for sure ,they have dog smile show them ,labour its too quiet more harassment people no where to report tulyemo high.

  12. Spade not Spoon

    There is an under-performing impostor who needs to be fired first, then the rest can follow, nothing has changed, in fact, live stock and fish will suffer, while rhino horn and elephant tusk will disappear from the surface of this land, we don’t know what will happen to sport, awe mwe!

    • Ben

      Spade well said! Hope the Elder has repented otherwise our animals will be devoured by the wolf.

  13. Kings

    4 out of 10, why keeping that mad lady luo nkandu? chitotela ku tourism nomba elo lwanya, the man is a problem already, what is happening mr lungu kanshi? these two must leave.

  14. Chama Boma

    Chitotela is now a game ranger protecting the elephants from the poachers!

    • Fredrick Mulenga

      Reshuffles, reshuffles, they mean not much when done in the context of Peters principle. This principle looks at an officer that goes into his/her trays and begins to move / ruffle papers rifling through them rapidly and getting overwhelmed at how much pending work there is in there! Holding his head in both hands, sighs heavily and starts shuffling the papers. When you shuffle papers after a pause, it means you are reshuffling them. The problem is not the ministers, but lack of internal management policies at presidents level! Who offers oversight functions to the president, how is the president made accountable? Simply stated, is it whims, convenience or threats to the throne that makes the president react by Peters principle? In Zambia, it must be a combination of some of the things I have said that make a president reshuffle ministers, fire PSs and recall some Diplomats back! If it were policies, ministers would know their contract would be say 3 years at a particular ministry, or maximum of a political term of office (5years), etc before they moved to another ministry. Or better still, depending on performance, assessment of an independent body and highly credible one would make a recommendation for recruitment and placement of a minister/s. Again, in Zambia the president sits alone-he often takes that lonely overnight-act to select his cabinet, using tribal balancing, cohorts, scratch my back I will scratch yours, even downright tribalism, nepotism, and hey, even sidekicks may be well placed in cabinet! So, you have reshuffles when the president feels you have become too familiar, patronising and forgotten your place-then the hired are fired or reshuffled!!

  15. Gidion

    Job well done 💯, but you have to think twice on ministry of fisheries and livestock,we have well educated proffessors like Dr I.K phiri at unza there,he is a good man who has been working under this ministry for a long time and he has an experience, please my president you have made a wonderful changes but think twice on ministry of fisheries.

  16. Ben

    When making reshuffles consider their past experiences. We have men and women in agricultural who can do well than giving us a failed Luo and elder Chitotela should have been fired.

  17. Sylvester Moomba

    All these perpetual hiring and firering and transfers of the current cabinet will never bring anything to this country. The changes are like someone who tries to clean his clothes using dirty water.

  18. Hh

    @ Moomba uli chi imbwa cabe.

  19. Justin

    These are good reshuffles

    To discuss Zambian politics just join us

    ‎Open this link to join my WhatsApp Group: https://chat.whatsapp.com/Jcu3nXgSa7xKHwT139QJBg

  20. bk

    U have left another workless minister. ..Dora, she talks for nothing in her ministry some workers are still suffering she has forgotten her role. .kick her out. .Times of Zambia employees are in areas of 8months as at now. ..shake the board and find the best way to the problem of TOZ

  21. Joshua

    i give him, 1 out of 10. all those pipo their under performs in their areas, and corrupt.

  22. Liverpool

    Imwe sure how can you give him 9/10 ? When it’s the same criminals just changing the position ,as for madam chalikosa you’re the worst mp for mpika central. The tazara workers are suffering ,the casual workers for tazara has not been paid for two years now ,the retire has not being paid since 2001 and the president is busy keeping you. The people of mpika central awaits you with your president to come and dress all these problems.madam chalikosa you’re the waste mp mpika central had produce in the Zambian history.

  23. Hon G K

    There is no development without cbu mwebantu Zambia behind,why my fellow’s look into this

  24. Milz Khingston

    Ba chitotela ,madam luo and this labour minister should be next coz for me they are doing absolutely nothing their performance is 1 out of 20…remember time is running soon we’ll have elections therefore reconsider your position mr president

  25. Zela

    Good move Mr President though it is a bit late for your reign! Clitoral is another force to reckon with! If you had fired him, l would have rated you C+ but as it is l take it as a gimmick to cool the nation down! Time is ticking Mr President! You waisted the time that was given to you! Chitotela has caused your downfall!

  26. RB

    4 out of 10. why leaving kapata, luo, chitotela, Vincent mwale, kampyongo. These ministers are hypocrites. they dont mean well for us as a party PF at large. Our President, please fire these ministers in order for us to going beyond 2021. These people will lead to your downfall if you maintain them.

  27. it one

    ndeloleshafye

  28. nulilomulilo

    Ba lungu inchikwaka bachimwena ku ma palayi,those ministers you have they can make you to fail the election 2021,luo God will punish you for what you have done about cbu,wait and see. 🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑

  29. puzzled

    2day Its Cabbinet Reshufle 2021 It Will B President Reshufle

  30. Donald Trump's speech

    Don’t think that things will be better with your reshuffles you are killing these people with your selfishness poor leadership

  31. Mutenguleni

    I hear this guy called Luo has committed suicide

  32. Tuli Bantu

    As for ichi, chi Vincent mwale, sichiziba na kwamene banachi votela, cheve chiziba chabe kutenga ndalama nakudya, chinaibala banthu bamene banachivotela, iwe lungu, chi Vincent just fire him he is worst mp chipangali has ever produced, no development is taking place in that constituency, he doesn’t even worst his time to visit his constituency, balema nacheve icho Ku chipangali

  33. Likando

    Well Mr. Mawere I
    I am sure you now realise that we are all same. I remember how you refused my greeting at Mulungushi ICC. My friend poliyjc power is never permanent. Friends will always be there for you. You were an extension officer with ZNFU in Mbala I met you at Mulungushi ICC during the defacto NDF. I could not believe that a leader like you could refuse to be greeted. Time to learn. Form me you have no leadership qualities. Congratulations to ECL for wedding you out my brother. Go and do your homework.

  34. os

    You masters already told you that do not try to steal Mwibala.

  35. Chief

    Please the time is not okay stop stealing Mwibala

  36. Que

    Good analysis!!

  37. Anonymous

    All Zambians need is reduced corruption and strengthening of the Zambian kwacha. impiya ikwateko amaka bane.

  38. F-CEE

    Good news on nkandu luo, let her be dealing with cows and fish.
    She took a very bad stance over CBU, well she had it coming, ministry of higher Education is a very sensitive ministry which needed to be handled with the care it deserves.

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