US President Donald Trump has officially welcomed Zambia’s newly appointed Ambassador to the United State, Mr. Lazarous Kapambwe.
According to a statement released to the media by Eric Mwanza, the First Secretary for Press and public relations, at the Zambian Embassy in Washington, President Trump expressed his Government’s desire to deepen the “strong and abiding friendship” between Zambia and the United States of America.
In a letter of acceptance of the Letter of Credence for Mr. Lazarous Kapambwe, President Trump said; “Pursuant to the authority vested in me by the Constitution of the United States, I accept the Letter of Credence for Lazarous Kapambwe as Ambassador of the Republic of Zambia to the United States of America and accept him as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Zambia and acknowledge receipt of the Letter of Recall of his predecessor.”
“I welcome Ambassador Kapambwe as a member of the diplomatic corps in Washington and express our Government’s desire to advance our common agenda and deepen the strong and abiding friendship between our countries, President Trump said.
Washington and Lusaka have for generations enjoyed long-lasting and strong friendship with few parallels on the African continent. The friendship dates back decades to Zambia’s independence in 1964 when the country’s founding leader, Kenneth Kaunda, found in the United States a genuine, willing ally and set the stage for a long-standing partnership.
President Edgar Chagwa Lungu appointed Mr Kapambwe as Ambassador to the United States to take over from Dr. Ngosa Simbyakula who had been appointed as Zambia’s Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York.
In February, former Foreign Affairs Minister Harry Kalaba alleged that Mr. Kapambwe had been expelled from the US, when he was scheduled to present his credentials to President Donald Trump on 7th February 2020.
Mr. Kalaba said the American government had retaliated because American Ambassador to Zambia Daniel Foot was unfairly treated by the PF government for merely expressing his opinion on the imprisonment of the Kapiri gay men, adding that Zambia will have to bear the consequences for poorly handling its diplomatic relations with the USA.
Mr Kalaba’s position was quickly refuted by Vice President Inonge Wina who has insisted that Zambia’s Ambassador designate to the United states Lazarous Kapambwe had not been recalled, adding that no Zambian diplomat has been expelled by the US Government in retaliation to the expulsion of that Country’s Ambassador to Zambia Daniel Foote.
Mrs Wina said Ambassador Foote was not expelled from Zambia but that he was recalled by his country after Zambia complained over his conduct regarding the issue of homosexuality.
Mrs Wina explained that as Ambassador to the UN, Ambassador Kapambwe had a different permit which is different from the one required by Washington.