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PF is not ready to be threatened – Siachoona

THE PF in Southern Province says it is not ready to be threatened.

Reacting to President Hakainde Hichilema’s statement last week when held a press conference that the PF must behave themselves, Southern Province PF vice chairman Simalonga Siachoona argued that the gesture exhibited by former president Edgar Lungu to hand over power peacefully was enough evidence that the PF was cooperative.

“Much as we are going to offer constructive criticism, I think we are not ready to be threatened. We will take the advice of the President because he is our Republican President,” he said

Siachoona felt that President Hichilema having assured all Zambians freedom, he must not dilute it with threats.

“He assured us of freedom, we want the pronouncements he makes to be factual and truthful. You could be aware that the UPND members have continued harassing some of the PF members in this country,” he said. “And our expectation is that our Republican President will every now and then remind his officials to be obedient to him because he pronounced that everybody is going to be free. That no one will be harassed and we want to appreciate that because it’s the freedom that we want.”

Siachoona said where the UPND would do well the PF will give it credit but “where it will fail, PF will criticise”.

“Threats is one thing that we can criticise that we are being threatened especially by the Head of State. We are going to be very mindful in what President HH pronounces as a head of state in terms of governance generally because through him we want to feel safe as opposition political parties,” he said. “When he voices, he talks of peace as Head of State, we want to feel very free and very happy. But if he uses words which are a little bit threatening then we become scared.” Siachoona hoped that going forward as President Hichilema addresses the nation through press conferences, he should not use words that were tantamount to threatening citizens especially the opposition political parties.

“The truth is HH is the duly elected and democratically elected President and a lot of us committed ourselves to offer constructive criticism. So we don’t expect to be threatened when we do that,” he explained.

And Siachoona urged PF members to only say the truth in the manner they offered checks and balances.

“It is very important that as leaders we always say the truth. As opposition political parties we have a duty to attract confidence from the Zambians and part of the confidence that can attract Zambians is telling the truth,” he said. “So if our PF leadership have evidence in whatever they say against President HH then they are okay but what they should know is that we have a duty as PF to unite our members and to attract Zambians generally by stating facts. We do not want to say things just for people to say we are talking without being factual.”

He appealed to the PF leadership to ensure what they say about President Hichilema and the UPND was factual.

“So those senior PF officials talking about HH this, HH that, must only tell the truth because they are the face of the party,” added Siachoona.

Last Thursday, President Hichilema asked the PF to behave themselves.

“PF members, I want to appeal to you, behave yourselves. Don’t provoke a situation that we are managing well,” he said during a press conference at State House. “…So, PF, behave yourselves. You’re lucky that HH is the President of Zambia, you’re very lucky. So, behave yourselves! Let sleeping dogs lie. But for you sleeping dogs, keep
lying there.”

He reminded the former ruling party to appreciate that it was the UPND which won the August polls.

President Hichilema said had PF won, there would have been bloodshed all over the country.
“PF must say ‘thank you’ to us. Sometimes they must say thank you to us. If it was PF that won the 2021 elections, blood would have been all over,” President Hichilema said. “I was told myself that I was fit for a bullet in my head. Have you forgotten? And that after election, the first action my colleague was going to embark on was to put me behind bars. 15 times was not enough, he needed me to be there again.”

He pleaded with the PF to stop provoking UPND members who have been disciplined so far.
“…if we allow the UPND members to revenge, how will the people live in the communities? By now you know that UPND are in the majority, isn’t it? How will PF live in Mandevu?” he asked. “How will PF live in Chawama if we say to a UPND member ‘revenge, avenge’? What will
happen? Think for a moment. It is my duty, my singular honour to restore order in this country.”

President Hichilema said PF would find his advice valuable in future.

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