NANCY SIAME, Lusaka
PRESIDENT Lungu has appointed former Inspector General of Police Stella Libongani as Zambiaâ€™s new High Commissioner to Namibia.
And President Lungu has warned diplomats not to think that they have been sent into retirement when they are deployed into Foreign Service because they are there to serve the country and not relax.
The President has also appointed Shadreck Luwita as Ambassador to Russia and Lawrence Chalungumana as Ambassador to Angola.
Speaking during the swearing-in ceremony at State House yesterday, President Lungu said being sent into foreign service should not be considered as a retirement package for the appointees to sit back and relax.
â€œI know that you have all served in the civil service for a long time. We are not sending you there for retirement as may be the notion by many, but itâ€™s a privilege and a duty to serve,â€ he said.
President Lungu said he does not expect laziness from the new diplomats.
He also warned diplomats to be mindful of the sensitivity of the host countries as they (host countries) could have certain positions on issues which may not be the same as that of Zambia.
The President urged the diplomats to respect host countriesâ€™ views on political matters and not to be at variance with their position.
President Lungu urged the diplomats to consult with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs if they are not sure on certain issues.
â€œI have seen some diplomats commenting on social issues, which is not in their area of jurisdiction. I have also heard ambassadors talking about politics in host countries. That is not your duty; yours is to represent Zambia,â€ he said.
President Lungu urged the diplomats to be disciplined and avoid the press as much as possible unless it is necessary or part of their jurisdiction.
The President said some diplomatsâ€™ comments on some issues had caused him embarrassment.
And Speaking in an interview after the ceremony, Mrs Libongani said her first task once in Namibia would be to strengthen bilateral relations especially in commerce and trade.
â€œI am very humbled with the appointment and I will put in my best,â€ she said.
Mr Luwita, who has over 30 yearsâ€™ experience in the civil service and served as deputy director general in the Office of the President, said he would work with Russia to explore the use of nuclear energy to increase electricity supply in Zambia.
Mr Chalungumana said he would anchor his activities on trade between Zambia and Angola to promote engagement by local entrepreneurs in business.
NANCY SIAME, Lusaka