Those of you who are stupid and foolish in speculating rumours, both inside our party and outside our party, must stop it! UPND vice-president Geoffrey Bwalya Mwamba (GBM) fumed at a press briefing, Thursday.
Meanwhile, UPND president Hakainde Hichilema refuted reports that the UPND is planning to replace GBM with NDC’s Chishimba Kambwili.
A Facebook page called ‘Koswe’ had been alleging that GBM had been paid US$50 million to ditch the opposition party, but GBM rubbished the claim, warning that he’d deal with some party members suspected of circulating the rumour.
“I want to address what is being speculated on social media, you know how social media is; sometimes there is an element of truth, sometimes it’s mere speculation. Most people who take interest in social media must have seen the speculation going on that GBM has resigned from UPND; it can only take a foolish person to speak like that! I am challenging all of you Zambians, is that how you know GBM? Am I a weak soul? Can I be bought for 30 pieces of silver at the expense of many Zambians who are suffering under the hands of ‘utu tu PF, tukabwalala (these little PF thieves)?’ Come on, be serious, Zambians!” GBM said.
“And those of you who are stupid and foolish in speculating rumours, both inside our party and outside our party, must stop it! Otherwise, I am going to stamp my authority as vice president of this party and I will deal with you! Time has come now to deal with those who want to bring confusion in the party and I am not going to allow that at all. If this used to happen in the past, not anymore! From today onwards, behave yourselves; I am going to deal with you personally! Why do you want to bring so much confusion in the country? People have stopped sleeping, thinking that GBM has resigned.”
GBM said his supporters were panicking over the rumour, vowing that he could never join the “sinking ship”.
“Maybe people think that GBM is just GBM alone, GBM has got followers! And those followers are not sleeping; they are saying ‘why have you done this?’ And I told them that ‘come on, take it easy, I have not resigned and I have no reason to do that.’ Why should I resign? Where am I going to? Unless I am going to form my own political party. But they are saying I am joining PF, ‘tukabwalala, natulete nsala eto ndeya mukujoina (these little thieves who have brought hunger are the ones I should go and join)?’ And sooner rather than later, they will be out of power. Look at the misery they have brought for Zambians; would I be foolish as GBM to go and join a sinking Titanic called PF? Come on, let’s be serious, Zambians! And I don’t want that nonsense again. And the people of Zambia, I want to assure you that I am not going anywhere, I am his (HH’s) vice-president,” GBM explained.
He said PF could not afford to buy him at US$50million as the Treasury had been emptied by theft.
“So, take it from me, I am still vice-president of UPND, and I will remain vice-president. There is no one who is going to shake me and I am not going anywhere, there is no way I can join PF! The speculation was that they have given US $50 million, maybe they don’t know what I am worth, I am worth more than US $50 million! How can I go and get US $50million from those guys? And in any case, do they have that money? They have stolen all the money, the Treasury is empty! Let’s remain intact as UPND, we are still intact as your leaders, we are reasonable people, we are able to deal with problems if they are there. But I can tell you that there are no problems in the party at all,” said GBM.
Meanwhile, Hichilema refuted reports that the UPND was planning to replace GBM with Kambwili.
“The Alliance is not here to replace GBM, Nalumango or Katuka, no! It is here to bring unity in the country. UPND remains an independent party with its own structures. NDC, NAREP, ADD, remain in the pact with their independent structures. Today, we can give the media the copies of the Alliance MoU, it has nothing to bring confusion in the UPND. I have seen people saying that, ‘no, Chishimba Kambwili wants to replace GBM as UPND vice president’ where is that? Kambwili is important in his NDC; Milupi is important in his ADD; Chipimo is important in his NAREP. UPND remains strong and other parties in the Alliance remain strong,” he said.
He advised youths in the party to avoid creating camps.
“I, as your custodian, I don’t want you to be spending time creating confusion in this party, there is no youth for Hakainde, there is no youth for GBM, there is only a youth for UPND! Because if you go that way, you begin to group yourselves into camps; youths for HH, youths for GBM, youths for Garry Nkombo, depending on who makes more noise, the youths will think that’s where there is value,” Hichilema said.
“What we did in Roan is correct; Kambwili was sitting MP there and we were showing our olive branch to Kambwili. If Kalaba had decided to put a candidate in Bahati, I could have lobbied all you members that let us support Kalaba in Bahati, but he didn’t, we are there in Bahati. Going forward, UPND will put MPs in all constituencies. My appeal to you is that, ‘let’s go and work’ when you are idle, you start thinking about things that don’t exist.”
He further called on independent MPs to work with the UPND in rejecting the Constitution Amendment Bill was it was tabled in Parliament.
“Our MPs deserve a party on the back, they fought very hard, we watched the debate in the House. Remain united. I want to appeal to independent MPs; search your souls, what are you in that House for? To damage this country or to serve the citizens? Vote with the UPND at the next stage, when the Constitution comes at whatever stage, we must not give the PF a master key to the door because they will amend the Constitution and give themselves seven years in office! Can you survive seven years of Lungu in office? Ninshi chingwere yazula, muzayamba kufa’ (Chingwere Cemetery would be filled, there will be more deaths). So, I want to appeal to you to support our MPs,” said Hichilema.