Only Hakainde Hichilema’s financial muscle is keeping the UPND alive, says PF media director Sunday Chanda.

And Chanda says Parliament should consider passing a law which bars someone who has never been a member of parliament from becoming Head of State because they do not qualify.

At a PF Interactive Forum, Sunday, Chanda charged that the UPND was a destructive party which insisted on blocking progressive bills at the expense of the Zambian people.

He charged, however, that the UPND was in ICU as only its leader’s financial muscle was keeping the party alive.

“Last week, he did announce that the UPND were going to block the Constitutional Amendment Bill because they want it to be a subject of dialogue and not parliament. But we know that the duty to make laws falls within the ambit of Parliament but we know that the UPND, as usual, they would want to politicize and dramatise the process for the simple reason that they want to continue playing to the gallery. These processes have been on-going, the Minister of Justice made an announcement in terms of the processes to do with engagement that there will be wide consultations with all members of parliament irrespective of their political affiliation, that all party secretary generals will be consulted, that all presidents of various political parties would be consulted, CSOs and other stake holders before the bill can be taken to Parliament. [But] the UPND as we know, they now moved from the brought in dead impeachment motion, from there they started sponsoring the parentage and nationality crusade against His Excellency the President Edgar Lungu with the sole purpose of discrediting the Head of State, that has also failed.And now they want to move to creating drama around the Constitutional Amendment Bill but we want to ask the Zambian people to laugh at the UPND because the only thing the UPND will not block is Hakainde Hichilema. They will block anything but Hakainde Hichilema. Whether or not they will succeed, the UPND is dwindling and all the empirical evidence is there to show that the UPND is dwindling,” Chanda said.

“The UPND is nose-diving, the haemorrhage in the UPND is terrible that unless they wake up and smell the coffee, the UPND very soon will be a shell of itself. If you think of the UPND of Anderson Mazoka and you look at today’s UPND, you realize that the UPND has lost its glory, the UPND is in ICU. The only thing that is keeping the UPND alive is Mr Hakainde Hichilema’s financial muscle. If you took away his financial muscle, even his generals in the UPND will rise against him.”

And Chanda said Parliament should pass a law which bars people who have never served as members of parliament from contesting the presidency.

“The dialogue attitude that the UPND has [of saying] ‘dialogue first before we can do anything’, we know that they do not mean well on dialogue and Commonwealth has now agreed that the dialogue must be home grown. We have seen UPND attacking the UN resident representative, we saw them attacking the Commonwealth, accusing the Commonwealth that they have been bought by the Patriotic Front and now, in conclusion, the UPND failed to block the bill on universal coverage, health insurance, they tried to block it but failed, we know that they failed to block so many bills in parliament and we want to tell them that they do not have the capacity to block the Constitutional Amendment Bill when it goes to Parliament. And the Zambian people must see that UPND does not mean well for this country. They frustrated the Referendum, as we speak, Zambians would have had the right to education, health care, shelter and all those rights that the PF proposed in the Bill of Rights. Thanks to Mr Hichilema and the UPND, they denied Zambians those crucial rights and we ask the Zambian people, laugh at the UPND, they don’t mean well for you. And that’s the challenge of having a party President who’s never been a member of parliament, he has never even been a branch chairperson, he has never been a media director or MCC, he has never even been a cadre,” said Chanda.

“The man doesn’t qualify and maybe Parliament must consider that someone who has never been a member of parliament must not aspire for presidency. We have seen people saying ‘there are people in certain countries who were never politicians and from no where they became presidents of some countries, some of them great countries’ but you and I know what is happening under that leadership and under that kind of presidencies. It is very important that before someone aspires to be president, let them understand, let parliament consider, someone must be a member of parliament before they can head the executive. You can’t just come from selling companies and say ‘I want to be president’, it doesn’t work.”