Muluzi and Sata: After a 40-
minute closed-door meeting
Zambia’s Informantion, Broadcasting and Tourism Minister Given Lubinda has advised his Malawian counterpart Patricia Kaliatu not to be mischievous over PresidentMichael Sata’s decision to forgive President Bingu Wa Mutharika over his decision to deport Sata in 2007.
According to Times of Zambia, Lubinda was reacting to Kaliati’s statement that the Malawian government had not yet received official communication from the Zambian government over the decision by President Sata.
Kaliati who is Malawi government spokesperson said the Mutharika admiistration had not received official communication over President Sata’s decision to let “by-gones be by-gones”.
But Lubinda advised his Malawian counterpart “against being dogmatic” because it was President Sata who was injured and decided to forgive his Malawian counterpart.
“I think that they should not be dogmatic because it is unnecessary,” Lubinda said.
“ President Sata decided to bury the hatchet and he mentioned to that country’s former President Bakili Muluzi that he had decided to forget about the past,” he said.
Sata on Friday said he had decided to forgive President Mutharika. He told journalists at State House in Lusaka that “let by-gone be by-gones” and that he was hoping to visit Malawi soon.
“The main reason for Dr Muluzi’s visit was to reconcile Zambia and Malawi. The President (Muluzi) wants us to forget the incident where I was deported from Malawi.
“We feel that Zambia and Malawi are bigger than Michael Sata and Bingu Wa Mutharika,” Sata a staunch Catholic, said as quoted by Times of Zambia.
Zambia Daily Mail reported that Malaiw’s former president Bakili Muluzi “will go down in history as the man that helped to resolve the standoff between the two countries after meeting Mr Sata at State House during a private visit earlier scorned upon by Prof Mutharika, who had indicated that he did not care about the warm relationship Muluzi enjoyed with President Sata.”
The Malawian government, ostensibly working on orders from Mutharika, had immigration officers pack President Sata on a 4×4 and dropped at the border with Malawi even though he could have used his return air ticket, greatly infuriating Sata, who has now decided to rise above personalities and bury the hatchet for the good of the two sister countries even though an apology has not been forthcoming from Mutharika.