Former PF Lusaka Province youth chairperson Kennedy Kamba says those trying to block his re-election are not legitimate members of the ruling party otherwise they would recognise all the work he put in to get the Patriotic Front into office.
Reacting to protests by some PF youths who argue that he should not be re-elected for allegedly failing to empower them, Kamba said he would not be intimidated by those who expected him to follow them to their doorsteps with mealie meal.
Speaking in an interview with News Diggers! Kamba advised those with issues against him to approach him in person and iron out their concerns without resorting to social media.
“I will need to know which structures those people are coming from and which organ? Because only party members of the PF have benefited during my tenure as youth chairman, and that I can tell you. But if they belong to UPND or they belong to MMD, how can they benefit because ours is to make sure that we empower the youths. We are just coming from giving the youth empowerment in all the constituencies with my National Youth Chairperson Honourable Stephen Kampyongo. We rolled out that programme and all the youths benefited. We cannot start being questioned as if we are in court on what we have done. Our party structures know what we have done as leaders of the youths [and] when they say that we have not empowered the youths, what are they saying?” Kamba asked.
He said the Higer bus project which the youth were accusing him of abusing to enrich himself was not a party project but that of the Ministry of Youth and Sports.
“Are the Higer buses being run by the party? Is that project being run by the party? That project belongs to the ministry, you should differentiate between the Ministry of Youths and the national youth chairperson’s office. All what we did was to work hand in hand with the Ministry of Youths so that the programmes which are being rolled out for the youths, our party youths benefit including other youths from other political parties. So what is it they are saying about the Higer buses, what are they insinuating? Can they substantiate? Which is it? Kennedy Kamba got all the buses and got the money or maybe he is getting money from the Higer busses? This is why I am saying it will be very difficult for me to start answering or commenting on issues to do with people who don’t belong to the party, people who don’t have positions in the party. Ask them which positions do they have in the party? Because as a member of the party, you are recognised by being on the structure and that is their opinion anyway. As for me, there is a lot which we have done for the party with our national youth chairperson,” he said.
Kamba said unlike those who were attacking him, he contributed to putting the PF into office.
“We have been in these positions since 2009, I have been youth Chairman, since opposition. We made sure that we formed government. It is my leadership as Lusaka province youth chairman which made that this party contributes in terms of votes, to start with Lusaka province. Lusaka Province as you are aware in 2011, we were the highest in terms of voters. You talk of Mandevu, talk of Matero, talk of Munali, we produced more than 110, 000 votes per constituency. That is an achievement. We made sure that we pushed in the PF government into power, we removed the MMD [and] by then those same youths who are talking nonsense were not near the party. They were afraid to talk against the MMD, we raised our voices,” he recalled.
Kamba also highlighted some of the youth empowerment projects he did for his structures.
“Apart from that, we have done a lot of empowerment. Just recently, we organized the fundraising dinner dance where we raised K2 million and the money is still there. And we have given out in all the constituencies of Lusaka Province K75,000 each. Now if they want me to start following them at their houses so that I start buying them mealie meal, that I cannot do. Or if they continue insulting me so that I can give them money to stop insulting me, so that I am black-mailed , I cannot do that. There is a lot which we rolled out for the youths, the mobilization, the youth empowerment, the employment. Our youths have gotten employed, those of course who are educated and have got papers. So if they are being sponsored, let them be, we are going to meet on the ballot box,” Kamba said.
He insisted that he would not fall prey to those trying to blackmail him by insulting him on social media.
“Ask them that why don’t you approach that person and talk to him one on one than rushing to the blog? So that you black-mail me, I start giving you money to stop insulting, I am not that kind of a person who can be intimidated like that. Us we are on the ground. Recently we were in Rufunsa where we had our campaigns launched in Luangwa [and] we were received very well in Lungwa and that is what has even sent them shivers because we are being welcomed in all the rural districts of Lusaka Province by the party structures and not just people who don’t belong to the PF. Tell them that Kennedy Kamba is ready for the elections and he was welcomed well by the district in Luangwa. And we are going to visit Rufunsa, Chirundu and Chongwe very soon,” he said.
Kamba said he was ready for the elections and advised those youths insulting him that his door was open for any dialogue.
“We are happy with the support the party structures are giving us. Those who are claiming that we haven’t done anything we will see if they are going to cast a vote at the provincial conference. The elections are coming, challenge them to stand at the ward, challenge them to stand at the constituency so that they vote us out if really they mean that we have never worked [and] not just by politicking on the blogs. It is not going to put bread and butter on the table. All what we encourage them is to go for elections and be voted at the branches, they go to the constituency they are voted, [and by that] they are going to vote us out. But all to say is my door is open if they have got any differences with me, if they have got anything to share with me, they are welcome, but if they want to destabilise the party, if they want to lose respect to the senior members of the party when they don’t belong to any party structures, as youths of the party we are going to protect the president and the secretary general of the party. We are not going to allow this party to lose focus,” said Kamba.