UPND deputy secretary general Patrick Mucheleka says the opposition party is not moved by threats of arrest targeted at its leader Hakainde Hichilema whom government is blaming for the meal allowance protests that led to the death of a fourth year student at the University of Zambia Great East Road Campus.
Unconfirmed reports from within government suggest that the State is likely to make some arrest surrounding the UNZA fracas, putting Hichilema at the centre of the probe.
When asked if Police were moving to arrest Hichilema in connection with the UNZA riots, spokesperson Esther Mwaata Katongo could not deny nor confirm, but challenged this reporter to verify the information from those who were spreading it.
“Maybe find out from the people who are saying that. I cannot confirm facts that I do not have, so go and ask them to confirm. Get more information from them. I wouldn’t comment on something that I don’t know,” said Katongo.
But Mucheleka said his party was aware of such moves and it was not moved.
“We are hearing all these psychological games they are playing [but] we are not moved at all and you know these are psychological games they are playing. We will not fall into that trap. With PF you can hear anything and they are capable of anything but we are not moved. Let them take responsibility for once. The only thing they know is how to steal, how to engage in corruption, even those quarrelling amongst themselves, you have been hearing how they are quarrelling. There is Luapula united and then there is this other faction. I even feel sorry for people that still believe in Lungu and his PF,” Mucheleka said.
“It is actually stupid to say the least. So let them take responsibility for once. And then how do they investigate themselves? If we want to investigate what happened at the University of Zambia…you think you can start going to blame the people and start playing psychological games, it doesn’t work. It’s shallow thinking. Let them go to NIPA or Chalimbana just to learn a little bit of managerial skills. You can’t just get a bunch of people from the streets and make them ministers.
Mucheleka said he could only blame President Lungu, Home Affairs Minister Stephen Kampyongo and his Higher Education counterpart Prof Nkandu Luo.
“PF are actually a bunch of frightened men and women. UNZA fracas, the person to blame first and foremost is PF itself. It is President [Edgar] Lungu, Nkandu Luo, and Kampyongo. Nkandu Luo doesn’t understand because she has never been to the University of Zambia neither has Kampyongo been to the University of Zambia. They have no idea whatsoever on how that institution runs. She can’t dialogue, she has no idea and that is why even late President [Michael] Sata had moved her from Local Government because of what she was doing. He put her in the Ministry of Traditional and Chiefs Affairs. That is the problem with PF, they have no idea of what they are doing, they always look for someone to blame,” said Mucheleka.
“They are just a bunch of people who can’t take responsibility on anything. Those of us who have been to the University of Zambia know very well that the students have always had UNZASU which she has banned. UNZASU is an institution that stands in-between management and the students and whenever there is a grievance, those are the students that discuss dialogue but these people don’t believe in dialogue.”