ALVIN CHIINGA, Mungwi
WITH tears of joy rolling down his face, sub Chief Chimba of the Bemba people struggled to mutter some words of appreciation as he could not believe his eyes.
In the presence of the Bemba Royal Establishment (BRE) spokesperson James Mulenga and Kasama Central Member of Parliament (MP) Kelvin Sampa, Chief Chimba remained astounded for a moment.
Outside his palace, women rolled on the ground and ululated, a traditional spectacle in Bemba land of showing gratitude and respect.
“I have never experienced this from the time we got our independence. It’s unbelievable that I will no longer have to use my bicycle to carry out my duties in the community,” Chief Chimba quipped afterwards.
Chief Chimba was visibly happy to receive a Mitsubishi pajero at his palace from the Kasama Central lawmaker recently. The chief becomes the latest beneficiary of Mr Sampa’s donation of motor vehicles to chiefs in Kasama.
The traditional leader challenged other leaders to emulate Mr Sampa’s crusade of uplifting the welfare of traditional leaders in Zambia.
He said the MP’s name was slowly becoming a household name in the province because every time he tunes in to the radio, he hears about what the parliamentarian was doing not only in his constituency but in other areas in the province.
Mr Sampa started working with chiefs and providing relief services in rural communities way before he was elected MP.
Chief Chimba noted that the Kasama Central lawmaker was complementing Government’s efforts of improving living conditions of traditional leaners, therefore deserves to be commended.
The BRE spokesperson was equally happy with the parliamentarian’s donation of a motor vehicle because it came at a time when the recipient was depending on a bicycle to traverse his vast chiefdom.
Mr Mulenga said the BRE was happy with the MP’s care for traditional leaders in Bemba land because providing transport to chiefs is a dignifying gesture.
He said the vehicle will not only benefit Chief Chimba but his subjects too.
Mr Mulenga challenged people in leadership positions to remember the needs of the vulnerable people and chiefs in the communities where they hail from.
Mr Sampa, on a recent tour of duty of Kasama visited three palaces and reiterated that he would continue working towards uplifting the welfare of traditional leadership in his constituency and Northern Province as a whole.
Senior Chief Mwamba of the Bemba speaking people echoed the sentiments of the BRE, saying other MPs in the northern part of the country should take a leaf from what the Kasama Central lawmaker was doing.
He challenged MPs to strive to improve the living standards of people who elected them into office.
Chief Mwamba said that it was regrettable that some MPs wait for distress calls from the electorate to visit their constituencies.
He further said MPs should take interest in working with the chiefs because they are closer to the people and therefore know the needs of the communities.
Chief Mwamba said it was regrettable that during their tenure, some MPs tend to forget about the people that vote them into office.
“Ensure that you report back to the people because they are the ones that put you into office,” the chief said.
He said Mr Sampa is one parliamentarian who interacts with the locals and chiefs and this has culminated into several developmental projects being implemented in Kasama.
“This is as it should be. I meet with Sampa often because he visits his constituency regularly to check on developmental projects,” Chief Mwamba said at his palace.
The senior chief said he will work with progressive leaders that are keen on stirring development but will shun those that are in the habit of practising divisive politics.
Chieftainess Mumbi Mukulu of the Bemba never minced her words when Mr Sampa visited her palace as she openly said she will always support the government of the day.
She commended Mr Sampa for visiting her palace and took advantage of the occasion to lament that her chiefdom was lagging in development although it was only a few kilometres from Kasama town.
The chieftainess also talked about other challenges in her area such as impassable roads and crime which thrives on failure by police to get to scenes of crime on time because of the rough terrain.
Mr Sampa assured Chieftainess Mumbi Mukulu that Government will work on the roads to ensure that the area is connected to the rest of the district.
He also promised that Government will work on the impassable feeder roads before the rainy season to allow for smooth movement of people, goods and services.
The parliamentarian said he would bring to the attention of relevant authorities challenges that the people of Kasama brought to light during his visit.
Mr Sampa’s visits to chiefs’ palaces in Kasama brought out issues needing urgent Government attention. The people are now waiting to see the relevant authorities addressing issues that they brought to the attention of the Kasama Central MP.
ALVIN CHIINGA, Mungwi