Southern Africa Network against Corruption (SANAC) executive director Gregory Chifire says the PF will not easily hand over power to the opposition because they are afraid of being imprisoned once they lose elections.

In a statement, Chifire, who fled the country last year after being handed a six-year jail sentence by the Supreme Court, stated that Zambia was likely to become like Zimbabwe due to the PF’s bad governance.

“It is unfortunate that those in the opposition think that the PF will hand over power to them like at a church ordination, no! With PF, it’s life and death! They will do anything to stay in power. They know that if they lose (which they definitely can on a fair slate) they will go to prison! These people are fighting for their lives. Opposition must wake up and stop being cry babes! It doesn’t matter how many tears they will drop, nobody will listen. They need to devise means and ways to beat the system, otherwise they will always be crying about rigging. Yes, they can claim PF rigging, so what? PF doesn’t care. They are fighting for their lives! This is the unfortunate situation we have found ourselves in,” Chifire lamented.

“Zambians are tired of the PF nonsense, but the opposition is not providing enough solace. They’re just obsessed with wrestling power for self-preservation without giving an alternative solution other than just kicking out PF.”

He observed that opposition political parties were also not giving hope to Zambians who were being victimized by the PF government because of their reluctant approach to mobilising people.

“Zambians are tired of the same old story! Zambians are tired of being victimised by the PF, they want someone who will give them hope, who they will run to for shelter in the time of a storm. But the opposition of today is too occupied about serving themselves. They can’t go to the people to sell their programmes. Press conferences in hotels everyday are not a solution! Those things are for NGOs, go to the people; go on the ground; go village to village. Forget about the international community, they will not come here to vote, it’s the people, sell your programmes to the people. Don’t waste time on useless court cases; they will not yield any results. After all, we all know that political battles are not won in court,” Chifire argued.

“The PF has for a long time been putting people in strategic positions in strategic institutions like police, OP, ECZ, Judiciary, media, name it. They have their kin and kith running strategic institutions, so to beat such a system, you need more than the ‘business as usual kind of politics’.”

And he said Zambia was likely to end up like Zimbabwe due to the PF’s poor governance.

“We are on a highway to Harare! We shall soon arrive at the point where Zimbabwe is today. We are in a difficult conundrum, and we shall soon live to regret. Our politics, our economy are showing symptoms synonymous to Zimbabwe. The PF has over time entrenched the system, collapsed both the governance and economic systems, such that it would be difficult for our people to get out of this quagmire. Our economy is in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU), the kwacha is on oxygen! We are helplessly waiting for the end result. Zambia is at the lowest since the re-introduction of plural politics. Unfortunately, it’s the poor who will bear the brunt,” stated Chifire.