PF does not belong to President Edgar Lungu’s mother for him to be appointing former members of the Movement for Multi-Party Democracy at his will, says Roan member of parliament Chishimba Kambwili.
And Kambwili says the only reason Nkana PF member of parliament Alexander Chiteme has been appointed Minister of National Planning is because he defended the procurement of 42 fire trucks for US$42 million.
Kambwili says he will meet President Lungu head-on in the 2021 elections whether in PF or his opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC).
Speaking when he swore in Chiteme as Minister of National Planning and Kwacha member of Parliament Joe Malanji as Foreign Affairs Minister, Monday, President Edgar Lungu challenged PF members who were unhappy with his leadership to leave the party instead of clinging to it.
“The political party that people voted for is PF, so if you can’t serve under my leadership, President of PF, then leave! But I can tell you that the reason why people still believe in us is because we are still attractive, the only party of choice for Zambian people is PF. That’s why [some] people who have left government have said they won’t leave PF, they have even gone to Court to remain PF,” said President Lungu.
Reacting to President Lungu’s remarks in an interview, Kambwili said PF was not his personal property and he was not even there when it was formed.
“Tell Lungu that I am only clinching on to PF because I don’t want unnecessary by-elections in Roan constituency. I don’t want to waste resources on a by-election in Roan because I was elected by the people of Roan and if you went to Roan today and ask them whether the people want me out, they will tell you that ‘our MP is Chishimba Kambwili, we don’t want anybody else’. Now, the law is very clear ‘if a political party expels a member illegally, the member will not lose his parliamentary seat’ and once the court rules, you can remain an independent member of parliament and continue serving. And for me, the most important people in this whole scenario are the people of Roan who voted for me and still want me so tell Lungu that I am not desperate, I can go into a by-election today but in whose interest?” Kambwili asked.
“So tell Lungu that yes indeed, I love the PF but I hate the corrupt leadership led by him. And tell him that it is not your PF, it is not your mother’s PF. He was not even there when we formed PF. PF does not belong to anybody, that PF belongs to the members and I am one of the members. So tell him if he thinks that he can push me out by virtue of the fact that today he is leader of the party, tell him that he’s not leader of the party for life, his leadership will expire very soon.”
Kambwili said President Lungu could not advise people to emulate his humility when he was extremely corrupt.
“Lungu is not even worthy responding to for now, he will be killed by his own conscience. He was telling people at the inauguration to be humble but the question that we must ask ourselves is ‘is Lungu humble?’ Lungu is not humble and there is no way a corrupt person can claim to be humble, there is no better way to describe a person like Lungu, the only best way is that Lungu is a corrupt and shameless person who shouldn’t even be in public to address the public. But the only problem that we have is that Lungu has no shame. The amount of corruption he has performed in his presidency…I don’t think he would even be opening his mouth to tell people to be humble. How can you call yourself humble when your government is involved in unprecedented corruption in a poor country like Zambia?” he wondered.
Kambwili wondered why the President had kept on appointing former MMD members as cabinet ministers when the PF had fought so hard to remove them from power.
“The way Lungu has destroyed PF, he will also be destroyed by the same members of the PF. How can you keep on appointing X-MMD people into Cabinet leaving PF members who have worked for the party tirelessly from its inception? Most of the people in the backbench today were deputy ministers who have got experience on how government works, intelligent people. Let’s take for instance [Kaputa MP] Maxas Ng’onga or Honourable Chungu Bwalya and many others but the man keeps on appointing known MMD people to his cabinet. Does it mean that when people bootlick you by defending the corruption then that is the basis for appointing them into your Cabinet?” he asked.
And Kambwili observed that the only reason Chiteme was appointed minister was because he defended the fire trucks.
“Because the only thing that Alexander Chiteme did is that he went and climbed over the fire engines and said the fire engines were worth the price and he even appeared on TV and defended the corruption of the fire engines and today he is minister and the ministry that he has been given is the ministry where government bases its developmental agenda. Surely, can you give the Ministry of planning to a nonentity, a novice, a joker?” asked Kambwili.
“What a President! Because if I were President Lungu and I want to work with former MMD members, the best man for that position is the Chembe MP honourable [Sebastian] Kopulande. It’s only Kopulande when I look around and want to talk about serious development but alas! Kopulande has never spoken to defend corruption so he can never be considered but because the other week, honourable Malanji was on TV saying ‘you should respect the President’, today he’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, what a joke!”
Meanwhile, Kambwili vowed to meet President Lungu head-on in the 2021 elections whether in PF or in NDC.
“Tell Lungu that those members he’s telling to ‘get out’, they will not get out because that’s not his party and we know his plans, he wants to chase away old PF members so that he can bring MMD so that Rupiah Banda and his stooges can then come and finish the corruption that they have started. But the goodness is that his agenda has been laid bare and we will meet head-on either through PF or NDC, we will meet him and challenge him. And let him know that the people in PF are not with him,” said Kambwili.