Lusaka Province Minister Bowman Lusambo says there is no party in existence that can successfully challenge the Patriotic Front and President Edgar Lungu.

And Lusambo says it will be very easy for the ruling to grab the Chilanga parliamentary seat from UPND since the seat has never belonged to UPND structures, but to the MMD, which is now in a working relationship with the PF.

Speaking when he featured on Hot FM’s Hot Seat programme, Thursday, Lusambo branded the existing opposition political parties in Zambia “a group of jokers” who were not ready to compete with the ruling party in terms of ideas.

“We have only one way of getting into government and that’s by [the] ballot. People will vote and they will vote for the best candidate and from 2015, the people have said that the best candidate is Edgar Chagwa Lungu and the PF. But, we have people who have not accepted the will of the PF, that’s why they just talk about politics every day. His Excellency Edgar Chagwa Lungu and his team, we have moved from the mode of campaign and politics, we are in the mood of development. As I speak, you will see a minister on TV inspecting roads, you will see a minister on TV inspecting other projects in some parts of the country because that’s the mood we are in as government. But we have opposition political parties who think it’s only them who can do something good but I can assure them that if that’s the mind-set they want to bring in the political fraternity, then we are sorry they can go and continue with their business,” Lusambo said.

“Some of these political leaders have been failing since they were born; they succeeded to dupe us in the privatization process, and they want to come back with stolen money from privatization to come and fight the government and fool our people. But that won’t happen, it won’t happen, whether you have got three million cows, governing a country is not keeping cows. Governing a country is about being a 100 per cent down-to-earth person; a person who can sit and analyse and can say Zambians first and himself second. If you hear a person saying himself first then the country second, just know we are in trouble.”

Lusambo boasted that the party that would challenge PF had not been formed, as all the existing opposition parties were just jokers who had no ideas to compete with the ruling party.

“2021 is coming and for us, we are very comfortable because our President has worked and he is still working. Come 2021, we will flaunt him that this is our candidate. And I can assure you that the party to challenge PF and His Excellency Edgar Lungu it is not yet formed. All these people we are seeing in these small organisations called political parties are just there to fulfil our democratic process because we are a democratic country and we will won’t stop them. We will allow them to participate, not to compete because they are not ready to compete for [the] Presidency. A person who is ready to compete for [the] Presidency will be seen, it is not himself to proclaim that, ‘I am ready,’ [a] person who will be ready to challenge PF and Edgar Lungu will be seen and his party is not yet formed, not these jokers we are seeing around,” Lusambo bragged.

And he claimed that PF would grab the Chilanga parliamentary constituency seat in next month’s by-election because they have the right candidate who is ‘morally upright.’

“If you go back to history, that seat was for MMD; our colleague, comrade Keith Mukata, was elected member of parliament for Chilanga under the MMD ticket. When we started the 2016 general elections, he decided to stand on the UPND ticket, but the structures, which were there weren’t for UPND, those structures were for MMD. And changing structures does not happen in one day, people have to believe in your policies. And they have seen what His Excellency Edgar Chagwa Lungu is doing to this great country. I can assure you that candidate that PF picked [Maria Langa] is the best candidate; she came second to Keith Mukata in the last general elections. So for us as PF, the seat in Chilanga is 100 per cent going to be a PF seat. Despite the MP who was there being a UPND MP, he rode on the structures of MMD, and today MMD and PF are in a pack, so it is very easy now to campaign as MMD/PF in Chilanga,” Lusambo argued.

He further observed that the aspect of “morality and integrity” will play a major role in voters’ choice of candidate.

“The aspect of morality and integrity is also going to play [a role] in Chilanga because people of Chilanga need a person who is upright, a person who will think straight and will help the people of Chilanga to get the development which they need. The people in Chilanga need someone who will be a role model to their girl child, to couples on how to nurture their marriage. They need a person who will stand on the platform freely and encourage young girls, encourage married couples to continue being together because some us believe in family ties,” claimed Lusambo.

“And the person who has been picked as Chilanga candidate for PF also believes in family values.”