ACTING President Ngosa Simbyakula says President Edgar Lungu has confidence in the people he appoints to take up various positions in government. And new information permanent secretary Godfrey Malama says it is not possible to talk about democracy without access to information by the majority of the citizens.
Speaking when he swore in five permanent secretaries at State House yesterday, Dr Simbyakula challenged those appointed to work hard. Those sworn in were Malama, Ronald Simwiinga as Ministry of Finance permanent secretary and Copperbelt PF chairperson Stardy Mwale as Lusaka Province permanent secretary.
Others are Mwangala Liomba and Bright Nundwe as permanent secretaries for Western and Muchinga provinces, respectively. “Congratulations to all of you. I am in constant touch with His Excellency and he has instructed me to swear you in so that you can get to work immediately.
There are many Zambians out there whom he would have picked from, but the fact that he has settled for you means that he has a lot of confidence in you, so go and work and good luck,” said Dr Simbyakula. And Malama, the former Zambia Daily Mail managing director, said he would endeavour to do his best to ensure that the mandate of the ministry was carried forward.
He said the media occupied an important position in any democratic dispensation. “You cannot talk about democracy without access to information by the majority of the citizens so that whatever decision they make, for example, during elections, must be based on well-informed disposition,” Malama said.
He said most people were concerned with the quality of some of the information the media was churning out. Malama said the media needed to preoccupy itself with ensuring that the information they put out has the required level of quality and avoid glorifying information that does not serve any purpose, adding that the media needed to be responsible.
Meanwhile, Simwiinga said he was grateful that he had been appointed. “As you know, Ministry of Finance is responsible for implementing fiscal policy.
In general, my portfolio will look at macroeconomic policies and fiscal policy and also financial issues.
There are a lot of things that have to be done and I will make sure that I offer myself with the knowledge and skills I have so as to implement the reforms and structural issues that need to be dealt with at the ministry,” said Simwiinga. And Liomba said there was need to develop Western Province, which the people were yearning for.