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 2010-08-18 09:16 pm Back to NEWS
'Rupiah Banda lacks interest in solving national issues' — SACCORD
 FILE: President Rupiah Banda in Namibia—The Post

Southern African Center of the Constructive Resolutions Disputes (SACCORD) has charged that President Rupiah Banda's frequent international trips are as a result of lack of interest in solving national issues.

President Banda's frequent and predictable international travels have continued despite criticisms from some sections of society that forced a press briefing by foreign affairs minister Kabinga Pande justifying the presidential trips a fortnight ago.

This week, President Banda was in Congo Brazzaville, days after he returned from commissioning a health training center in Botswana where he made a stopover before proceeding to Namibia for the Southern Africa Development Community SADC 30th anniversary celebrations.

According to his special assistance for press and public relations Dickson Jere, President Banda is being today expected in Mozambique for a three-day long visit and returns home on Friday.

In an interview with Post Online, SACCORD programmes and information officer Obby Chibuluma said that SACCORD was disappointed with President Banda's frequent travels which had come as a huge cost to the tax payer.

“I think as SACCORD we are disappointed with the continued luxury and unnecessary trips by the president. We thought that the president would reduce on this after so much criticism from the public but we see that the president is either not interested in resolving national issues here at home or that he does not have people who are competent enough to be able to represent him,” Chibuluma said.

Chibuluma observed that some of the trips are unnecessary to the development of the country and that it is unfortunate that they have been taken on at the expense of other pressing national issues that await to be attended to.

“Most of these travels are costly and if the president was sending his juniors like his vice-president and ministers, they could be less costly as opposed to a situation where he wants to attend each and every meeting and invitation as if he does not have ministers who can represent him,” he said.

And SACCORD has described justifications by the government that it carries more weight if the president himself visits a country to strengthen bilateral relations as unjustifiable and unacceptable.

“I think what the president is telling us is that he does not have competent people in government who can represent him and sign bilateral agreements on his behalf,” he said.

He advised President Banda to utilize the use for which he appointed his vice-president and ministers and concentrate on affairs pertaining to his own country rather than moving up and about the world.

The Post

 
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