UPND founder member Emmanuel Hachipuka has reminded President Hakainde Hichilema that youths and other party members have high expectation for jobs from him.
Hachipuka, who is also former Mbabala UPND member of parliament, adds that much as some of the party members may not have educational qualifications, they still possess skills which made the party form government.
He has warned that if the President totally keeps distancing the party leadership from his decisions, they may feel irrelevant.
“My message to HH is simply this, there is your party with high expectations for jobs from you into government. Keep the party [national management committee] NMC engaged and make them feel they are part of the decisions in creating your government,” Hachipuka advised. “If they are not, they might find it difficult to hold the party together. In making your appointments the party leadership must not be seen by the party as though they are irrelevant. If this happens, they will fail to hold the party together.”
He cited youths who have stood with the party and deserves recognition from the President.
“There are youths such as Brian Mulenga, a UPND recognised youth who has defended us for years even during the [Edith] Nawakwi days in MMD, then PF,” Hachipuka added. “They may not even be trainable but must be recognised in some way because they possess the skills that defended/carried our fight until we won. I am sure when the government is finally set up there will be room for such people such as Brian Mulenga. For now, I rest my case.”
There has been a debate on social media over the renewal of Zambia Revenue Authority commissioner general Kingsley Chanda’s contract, a man perceived to have been a staunch PF sympathiser.
Hachipuka nevertheless explained that apart from well-known party members, there were others unknown who supported the UPND from the background.
“This issue of Kingsley Chanda has, in my view, been adequately debated. I think there are many more such people in our government,” he said. “I want to remind all of you that although we think we know each other’s contribution to the UPND fight until 12th August, I personally think the higher you are in the party, the more you know about the sum total of how we achieved this result. Allow the President and his team to complete setting up our government.”
Hachipuka said the problem was that the team President Hichilema went with in government is not the one the party started with.
He explained that due to such a development, most party members had lost influence.
“The team President HH worked with at party level is most likely not exactly the same as that he is using now to set up his government. I am sure most of you have lost that influence. President HH has made it clear that he will aim to appoint people to government positions only if they are capable and competent,” noted Hachipuka. “This is how it should be in order for the economy to quickly turn around. The problem with that is, how do you reconcile the skills required to win an election and the skills required to run a successful economy? President HH has an impossible task because the youths who voted for us, most may not be members of UPND. Just as there are youths who voted for us, there are certainly civil servants who worked with us and voted for us or with us.”