STEVEN Masumba says when he speaks his mind it does not mean he has U-turned against his own political party, the ruling PF.
“I am in a position to call upon President Lungu that ignore those that hero worship because hero worshippers will always mislead you. They will not tell you the correct position of things on the ground. Even when there is some political infiltration in your own organisation, they will be busy telling you that awe bakateka icipani chilifye bwino (Mr President the party is just fine),” Masumba said. “Some of us if I was given an opportunity to be asked that ‘Masumba in your personal opinion what is the position’, I will tell him that Sir there is this group called the Luapula United. And there is another group which is saying they also want to contest at the convention, so cage these groups…”
He says he is compelled to tell President Edgar Lungu the truth.
The former Mufumbwe PF member of parliament said he was one of President Lungu’s blue eyed boys hence will continue to name and shame those that don’t mean well for PF and the presidency.
In an interview, Masumba said it was incorrect to assert that he was on the verge of leaving the ruling party for condemning the closure of Prime Television.
He said keeping quiet amid blunders by PF members would be doing a disservice to President Lungu.
“One of the things in this country that people know me for is that I am a character who is candid and believes in putting things straight and a person who speaks his own mind. It does not mean that when I speak my mind, that I have U-turned against my own political party,” Masumba said. “I am that politician that always keeps an ear to the ground and that means I want the best for our political party. And I always wish that PF must continue enjoying the power that we are mandated with by the people from 2011. So in other terms, I am amongst those loyal people and what makes me speak the truth in many times is about the loyalty not only to the party but also to President Edgar Lungu because I don’t want to go on records as that person who never told the President the truth.”
Masumba, who was the first PF member of parliament in North Western Province, said choosing not to tell President Lungu the truth about what citizens were saying would be detrimental to the presidency.
He said he would not want to be that politician that would keep clapping even when things were going bad in the party.
“The point I am trying to drive home here is that President Lungu is my man. That President Lungu is my president and I believe in him. He is a very cool President who under normal circumstances is such a person that you cannot easily abandon and leave alone in the cold,” Masumba said. “He is quite magnetic in the way I interact with him and deep down, for that that may be in doubt, this is the character that he loves, that character in me and he knows that there are those that will speak the truth at the end of the day.”
He added that there are different types of people that surround the President.
“Those that mean well and otherwise, those that want him to fail,” Masumba said.
He said characters like him give the President a wakeup call.
“So when I say good things about Dr Fred M’membe it does not mean I have joined the Socialist Party. You can recall that not long ago Kambwili (Chishimba) was admitted to hospital and this nation saw me go and visit him but even that time there was tension from people that didn’t understand the kind of person that I am,” he said. “I have enjoyed the comradeship with Mr Kambwili, so I cannot just choose to stay away from him because of politics – because politics come and go. I am not that kind of a person that will do politics in that fashion.”
Masumba said he was a type of a man that appreciates those that have done good.
He said if by any chance he decided to leave the PF, he would still speak good of President Lungu because he has done so much for him.
“I don’t speak ill of people because I am out of their camp. I don’t want to be asked that why were you not talking at the time you were there. I must be on record that even the time he was with PF, Masumba spoke about these things and even when I am gone I will continue to cherish the moments that I have enjoyed in PF. So I am still a loyal member of PF and will continue to be loyal to the President,” he stressed. “One of the things that people must know is that I am the first member of parliament that was elected on the PF ticket in North Western Province. I am still with PF and will continue to be loyal to President Lungu.”
Masumba urged President Lungu to ignore those that hero worship him because they will mislead him.
“I am in a position to call upon President Lungu that ignore, President ignore those that hero worship because hero worshippers – I have a challenge with hero worshippers – they will always mislead you, they will not tell you the correct position of things on the ground. Even when there is some political infiltration in your own organisation, they will be busy telling you that awe bakateka icipani chilifye bwino (Mr President the party is just fine),” he said. “Some of us if I was given an opportunity to be asked that ‘Masumba in your personal opinion what is the position’, I will tell him that Sir there is this group called the Luapula United. And there is another group which is saying they also want to contest at the convention, so cage these groups because others are good at deceiving the President by going to lie that bakateka this person wants to challenge you and he will hate that person for nothing. So bakateka let’s not condone such people, let us not tolerate them.”
Masumba urged President Lungu to believe in him as he is one that will always tell him the truth than merely applauding the leader.