President Edgar Lungu has challenged Democratic Party leader Harry Kalaba to report him and the Patriotic Front to the Anti-Corruption Commission for the corruption that he says is rampant in the ruling party.
And President Lungu says Kalaba will suffer political death in 2021 and should prepare to be buried.
Speaking when he addressed scores of residents in Bahati constituency to drum up support for his PF parliamentary candidate Charles Chalwe, President Lungu said he used to interact, move and eat with Harry Kalaba but not a single day did he complain of corruption or say that things were not well in the ruling party.
“Uyu mulumendo uwali Home Affairs Minister, twaleyenda nankwe, twaleikala pa lunch together twalya twaesha, not even one day did he say to me that “ifintu tafili bwino mu PF ba President muli corruptio’, not even one day! Kanshi alemona apo njikele epo alefwaya. (I used to move with that man who was Home Affairs Minister. Sometimes we would eat lunch together, but he never said ‘things are bad in PF because there is corruption. He just wanted my sit)” President Lungu said.
“Back in 2017 when we were in Pretoria, I said to him I am hearing that you want the presidency very much but take it easy, when it is your time in future to succeed me I will support you. But all he said was ‘they are just accusing me, and God is my witness. I told him that having an ambition is okay but God’s time is the best, Mpombo wibilima, ababilima tabaya.”
He added, “But surprisingly after some time he later said there is corruption in the party and I have resigned”.
President Lungu wondered why Kalaba did not notify him about the said corruption he was seeing in the party and government.
“I challenge him to state when he discovered that there is corruption. I challenge him to state who is corrupt and why he stayed the course until that day when he left without telling me because he was very close to me. If Kalaba truly saw corruption in PF, let him go to the ACC and report. It’s not for us to defend ourselves against false corruption allegations. He who alleges must prove,,” he said.
The Head of State told the crowd that he used to protect Kalaba whenever he received intelligence reports that the minister was planning to succeed him.
“Personally I told him and I know that whereever he is he is keen to hear what am saying and I can tell him in his face that ‘mwana, nalekweba shani’ (what was I telling you?)”, President Lungu said.
The Head of State added that he treated Kalaba as one of his trusted ministers from the Northern region, whom he encouraged to keep meeting with the people of Bahati.
“And he thought he was smart. Now let me tell you, let us show him that power is with the people”, He said to the crowd in Bemba.
He appealed to the people not to be bothered by the actions of Kalaba saying that the corruption he talks about was on his lips and that the luck of development in Bahati could better be explained by the former MP since he was the one in charge of traveling to countries so as to bring riches in the country.
“So namyeba ukweba ati ba kabwalala ilingi line ebalanda ati kabolala uyo, pakweba ati imwe mwi iluka iyo (So I am now telling you that a thief usually is the one that would say ‘their is a thief’ so as you do not discover them)”, he added.
The head of state further said on the by-election voting day Kalaba would experience the wrath of the people of Bahati and that in 2021 the former minister would die politically.
“Eleven April nindyonko akamona ubukali bwa ba Bahati, elo 2021 ku mushika politically afwa. Pantu Umuntu afwile ukwishiba ati amano nikubantu nobu yantanshi niku bantu”, said President Lungu.