KENNEDY Kamba has wondered how Professor Nkandu Luo who was rejected by the province because it felt she could not the win PF an election in Munali Constituency was chosen as a running mate to Edgar Lungu.
He says there is so much hatred and bitterness in the PF stressing that, “today, the leadership of the PF is not forgiving and forgetting”.
Kamba, who until Wednesday this week was Lusaka Province PF chairman, attributed the former ruling party’s heavy loss in the August general election to the central committee.
Kamba’s executive was dissolved by acting PF secretary general Nickson Chilangwa for what he termed indiscipline.
“It’s very unfortunate and the reason they are putting forward is unacceptable because at no time did the provincial committee utter any derogatory words against the former president Edgar Lungu,” he said. “At no time did my committee insult president Lungu. All what the central committee is doing are politics. How can they dissolve the executive on the basis that we lost elections? What of them, did they win the elections?”
Kamba said all the provincial executive proposals on candidates ahead of the August 12 elections were thrown out by the central committee.
He said instead of instilling fear and intimidation in party officials and members, the central committee should allow democracy to prevail ahead of the convention.
“We gave them candidates in Lusaka Province and when we went to the central committee for adoptions they gave us other candidates. We told
them that the person who can win us elections in Lusaka Central is Charity Lumpa, we told them that we need to go with Chris Mall (Chris Chiinda) in Munali, we told them that people in Kanyama want Mugala,” Kamba explained. “But when it came to the central committee they gave us other candidates. What can I do as the provincial chairman? Honestly, have you ever heard my voice note or recording insulting president Edgar Chagwa Lungu as Kamba Kennedy? At no time did I do that. All they are doing is block other candidates whom they feel have got massive support in Lusaka Province and if there are provincial officials supporting Chishimba Kambwili, it’s not all the committee.”
He explained that democracy demanded giving people the freedom to choose who they want to lead them.
Kamba added that those wishing to lead the party should first please the general membership.
“And that’s what democracy demands. People have to be free to choose who they want to lead the party. Allow all the candidates to come out and campaign. Let them appeal to the general membership of the party, let them appeal to the traditional leaders. Let them appeal to the intellectuals and to the civil servants so that us the delegates can tell the people that uwo balefwaya pa ground ni uyu (the popular one on the ground is this one),” he said. “But if somebody comes out in the open that I want to lead the party then others start following and those following that person are suspended, I don’t know…I don’t know where they are getting it.”
Kamba noted that there was a lot of hatred and division in the party.
“And there is so much hatred in the party. If president Michael Chilufya Sata had so much hatred, we would have not formed government in 2011. Willie Nsanda beat up president Michael Chilufya Sata at Radio Ichengelo in Kitwe but he was made to be the campaign manager for Michael Chilufya Sata. Today, the leadership of the PF is not forgiving and forgetting,” Kamba explained further. “Mwenya Matafwali and my vice-chairman are for Kambwili; it does not mean [Christopher] Shakafuswa, the MP for Mandevu, Chilando [Chitangala], the Mayor for Lusaka are supporting Kambwili. That is not the stance. They have got their democratic right to support whoever they want. And if my provincial secretary Mwenya Matafwali is seen on a picture with Chishimba Kambwili, it doesn’t mean he has got my blessings and I am equally supporting Chishimba Kambwili, no. It’s his democratic right.”
He said the general membership was just waiting to listen to manifestos of aspirants for the PF presidency.
“We are there opening our ears and eyes that whoever comes out in the open and wants to lead the party, we are going to listen to their manifesto. Let them sell themselves to the general membership of the party and the Zambians at large. And the Zambians are going to advise the delegates that umuntu tulefwaya ni uyu (the person we want is this one), the way it happened to president Edgar Chagwa Lungu. It’s the people of Zambia who advised the party leadership that uko mwaya ku Kabwe musale ba (where you are going in Kabwe, choose Mr) Lungu,” he said. “Don’t make a mistake and we moved as a party so what is the problem now? And now there is this thing that the leadership of the party will come from the members of parliament. Where is it coming from? Let them come up with a good reason for dissolving the Lusaka Province. Not that the province insulted president Edgar Chagwa Lungu, awe (no). If one individual has uttered derogatory statements against president Lungu, discipline that person, not the entire 24 [member] leadership.”
On Lungu’s running mate Prof Luo, Kamba said: “If the province felt that honourable Nkandu Luo cannot win us an election in Munali, honestly speaking how can she win us an election for the party at national level as a running mate, how?
If the reasons they are giving is that we lost the elections as a province, what has happened to Nkandu Luo who is still in the central committee?” Kamba asked. “Did she make the party to win elections as the running mate for her to continue sitting in the central committee? So, let them be fair and if they are going to do these kind of politics in PF then the party is not going anywhere, because there is a lot of bitterness and no forgiveness in the party. If president Michael Sata had this kind of bitterness we would have not formed government in 2011.”
Kamba asked the central committee to allow every competitor present themselves.
“So, let them allow all the candidates to come out in the open and campaign freely. That’s what democracy demands. But if they are not going to manage democracy then there will be no need to stay in the party because we stayed in the party because of love and unity. But if there is no love and unity then there is no need to stay in the PF,” said Kamba.