(By Edwin Mbulo in Sesheke)
PRESIDENT Edgar Lungu is lying that I will not stand in 2021, I will and again I will win, says UPND leader Hakainde Hichilema.
Hichilema says he is not President Lungu’s friend, because if he was, the Head of State would not have police shooting and chasing him through the bushes of Maondo in Sesheke.
Meanwhile, UPND chairperson for legal affairs Jack Mwiimbu says the PF wants to win the Sesheke parliamentary seat so that they can arbitrarily amend the Zambian Constitution and prevent Hichilema from contesting the 2021 presidential elections.
Hichilema told Sesheke residents that if they vote for the PF in today’s by-election, they would be saying that they love guns and teargas being used against them.
Addressing public rallies in Nakatindi, Sesheke and Katima Mulilo, the UPND leader urged residents to protect their votes in today’s by-election.
“Lungu is lying that he and I are friends. If I was his friend, he would not have been shooting at me…he is lying that HH will not stand in 2021. I am standing and we shall win again…Lungu should not lie that he loves you. If he does, he should have worked on the Livingstone-Sesheke road. If he loves you, he would not be removing
from the civil service anyone who has a Lozi name. Even doctors are being retired in national interest for just being Lozi,” Hichilema told the cheering Sesheke residents.
He added that he does not expect any normal person to go and vote for the PF.
“If you vote for the PF you are saying you like guns to be used against you, you like the teargas to be used on you, against your children, against the old Kangombe (in reference to Romeo’s father who died after being choked by teargas)…mwamukolo, mwamukolo, mukolo waba nyoko (is it your mother’s boat?) When there are no jobs, no schools, you go chanting ‘mukolo-mukolo’,” Hichilema said.
He also led Sesheke residents in singing what is becoming his campaign song: ‘Kakolo ka bona nika pwachise busihu (I crushed mum’s small canoe in the night)’.
In Katima Mulilo, scores of residents jostled to find any vintage point to see Hichilema with some climbing trees and others on rooftops.
Hichilema reminded the residents that there was a police and Zambia National Service recruitment exercise recently, but strangely only names from the Eastern Province made up the majority of those finally selected.
He told the residents that the Sesheke by-election was about himself, Kangombe and President Lungu and Dean Masule.
“Just look at us; who would you choose?” Hichilema asked.
He said he had never seen a government as brutal as the PF.
“I have never seen the government that uses guns against its own people instead of Zambia’s enemy. Only the Lungu government. Those guns belong to the people of Sesheke, they belong to the people of Sesheke. They cannot be turned against the people who own them. Only a foolish government like this one can do that,” Hichilema said.
He praised the residents for turning out in large numbers despite being brutalised by the police.
UPND elections chairperson Garry Nkombo said President Lungu wants to kill democracy.
Meanwhile, Mwiimbu said the PF under President Lungu was brutalising and humiliating Hichilema all because he was being loved by the people of Zambia and Lozi land.
Romeo Kangombe informed Sesheke residents that the UPND had done what it could but the rest of the electoral process was in their hands if they wanted unity and peace.