National Democratic Congress Leader Chishimba Kambwili has been told to stop spreading lies about the amount that will be spend on the construction of the landmark 800 bed capacity ultra modern state of the art Bangweulu Regional Hospital.
Youth Federation for World Peace Country Coodinator Mr Joshua Ndjovu has expressed shock at what he has described as dangerous levels of desperation exhibited by former Minister of Information and Broadcasting services, Mr Chishimba Kambwili of misinforming the Public on serious matters that have the potential to cause anarchy.
Ndjovu said he is deeply saddened that Mr Kambwili can deliberately mislead the public about the cost of the Bangweulu Regional Hospital which is under construction in Luwingu district of Northern Province.
He stated that President Edgar Chagwa Lungu had given the figure in the speech he delivered during the laying of the foundation stone for the construction of the regional facility and it was K154, 174 340.72 which translates into *US$11 million and not $154,174 340.72* as alleged by Kambwili.
“The President was very clear in his speech. He said K154, 174 340.72 and not $154,174 340.72. The K154, 174 340.72 translates into $11 million. To prove to you that am not speaking from without, let me quote from the Presidents Speech,”
President Lungu said, ” My Government has placed high premium on having a healthy and productive population to spur Socio -Economic development. This is as outlined in the 7th National Development Plan, the PF Manifesto and the National Health Strategic Plan 2017-2021. Therefore, it gives me great pleasure to lay the foundation stone to commence the construction of an Ultra Modern Hospital which will be constructed at the cost of *K154, 174 340.72,”* he said.
Mr Kambwili is quoted in the media as wondering how the cost of a hospital of the same design and shape could rise from $34 million to $154 million.
“In this country we need to say enough is enough of the stealing by this government. It is becoming too much,” Kambwili said.
He called for action from citizens saying they should not be laughing while President Lungu and his government were visibly amassing wealth under the pretext of working.
He alleged that President Lungu had interest in the Luwingu hospital.
“Look, President Edgar Lungu over the weekend went to Luwingu to go and do a groundbreaking ceremony for the construction of a hospital which they are calling Bangweulu Regional Hospital, but the regional hospital that he went to inaugurate, three of them are being built…one here in Lusaka, same design, it’s near the airport, it is called a specialised hospital. This Lusaka specialised hospital is going to cost $34 million together with all the equipment and training of personnel for six months and another will be built in Chief Kalindawalo’s Kingdom in Petauke and will also cost $34 million with all the equipment and training of personnel for six months and another one will be built in Chinsali, same structure and model,” Kambwili said. “But the only difference is that the one which is going to be built in Luwingu, the tender and everything was done within the Ministry of Health while these other three hospitals, the tender was done by the housing and infrastructure ministry. But listen to this; the ones that were done by the housing and infrastructure ministry were all costing $34 million but this one which was done by Ministry of Health under [health minister Dr Chitalu] Chilufya and his girlfriend who is the PS (permanent secretary) and chairman of the tender committee, the same hospital is going to cost government $154 million.
“$154 million… Do you know what $154 million can build? It’s a building bigger than UTH. This thing they are building will be called a general hospital, a general hospital to cost $154 million while three general hospitals in Lusaka, Kalindawalo’s kingdom and in Chinsali are costing $34 million each with all the equipment elo imwe muletamba ati ba President balebomba but umunenu alepoketa (but you are watching saying the President is working while he pockets money).”
Kambwili wondered how President Lungu could allow a minister and the PS to control the tender.
“And by the way just to build a hospital do you need the President to go and ground break? Ba DC bakulacita inshi, ba Mayor bakulahita inshi…(What will the district commissioner be doing? What will the mayor be doing?) It’s because the man has got an interest in that tender which cost five times more than actual cost,” he said. “Bakabwalala imwe muleipaya abantu (You thieves are killing people). I am calling upon the Anti-Corruption Commission, DEC to investigate who tendered for the hospital, how it was awarded and by the way, the contractor is Sunshare and you know that Sunshare there is an allegation that they are building flats for Chitalu Chilufya, the Minister of Health, you know that Sunshare has been sponsoring Chitalu Chilufya’s projects in the constituency…? Ba Kaunda ruled this country for 27 years and the time he was leaving office, to check his account they found that he had only $8,000 equal to about K8 million. For 27 years but Lungu rules this country for one year he leaps from K1 million to K23 million! I am telling you they will finish this country from stealing its resources while you watch but when we talk you think we are joking.”
Kambwili said he had been in government and had experience.
“And I know how these people are stealing. And we are allowing Lungu, two years before elections, today is the 12th of August, a very special day…it simply means, because our Constitution says elections shall be held on the 12th kwashala (remaining) two solid years but Lungu has started campaigning so ifi alepitana na tu Mukupa, Mumbi Phiri ni campaign ilya balecita, balemishinga butter pa menso uku baleiba balebika mumatumba yabo (They are smearing butter on your face, one hand they are stealing, putting money in their pockets while campaigning),” said Kambwili. “Say no to these thieves otherwise mukatampa ukulya abana benu (you will start eating your children). Tell us how the cost has escalated from $34 million to $154 million, do you know what $154 million can do? … They are saying you must respect the President…President who cannot put one plus one together, that it’s equal to two, he goes to ground break a hospital which is costing $34 million in other areas but is costing $154 million and he says ‘respect me’.”