National Democratic Congress (NDC) president Chishimba Kambwili says the PF is now feeling the pinch of his party on the Copperbelt Province, which is why President Edgar Lungu has been trooping that region on a regular basis.
And Kambwili says the PF should stop thinking that people will vote for them despite their suffering, warning that come 2021, wina azalila (someone will cry).
Meanwhile, Kambwili has given government a two-week ultimatum in which to re-open the Copperbelt University failure which, he will organize protests for parents and students.
Last week, President Lungu expressed worry at the mass exodus of some PF officials on the Copperbelt Province, asking Provincial chairman Nathan Chanda to embrace everyone, including those who challenged him and bring them back to the ruling party.
PF secretary general Davies Mwila also echoed those sentiments, wondering why PF officials were
fighting amongst themselves instead of fighting the opposition NDC.
But in an interview, Kambwili, the former Roan PF member of parliament, argued that the ruling party was feeling the pinch of the NDC on the Copperbelt Province, which explained why President Lungu had been frequenting the area of late.
“When a government becomes very complacent, arrogant and develops an ‘I don’t care’ type of attitude, they only wake up when things are bad. There is a by-election on the Copperbelt in Lubwa Ward and I can tell you that PF stands no chance! So, now, everybody is trying to find out what has gone wrong? What are they going to do to rekindle their lost glory? But I can tell you that they will not. It is just the poverty levels on the Copperbelt and all over the country, which have gone out of proportion. PF thinks by only building roads [then] that’s development of the country. Yes, building roads is important [and] is very good for commerce, but you cannot only put all your efforts towards building roads without looking at the general micro-parameters of the country,” Kambwili said.
“And President Lungu must stop this complacent thinking that the people of Zambia will support them despite their sufferings. So, yes, on the Copperbelt they have felt the weight of NDC, and not only on the Copperbelt. We have devised systems of mobilization because we are not allowed to have rallies, we are not given permits. The only thing you will hear is PF! PF rally here, PF demonstration here, PF solidarity here. And this will cost them dearly, and I can tell you that the way PF will cry in 2021 will be more than how Rupiah Banda cried because they have detached themselves from the grassroots.”
And Kambwili said some people would cry in 2021.
“And wait for the by-elections in Kitwe, you will see wina azalila! (somebody is going to cry!) And that is when you will know that PF kuya beebele. So, that is why you see them panicking. How many times have you seen the President going to the Copperbelt within a month? It shows you that nafikaba! (Things are bad!) Just two to three days ago, I heard (Kennedy) Kamba saying that PF is here to stay. In a democracy? If Kaunda after 27 years left? MMD after 20 years left, can you say PF is here to stay? And the problem is that the President enjoys listening to such rhetoric. There is no party which is here to stay in this country because democracy entails that from time to time, different political parties will have an opportunity to rule this country. So, if Kamba and Lungu thinks they are here to stay, there is only less than two years remaining (to the 2021 general election) and wina azalila, wina azakondwela,” he said.
Meanwhile, Kambwili said he would organize protests if government did not open CBU within two weeks.
“I am giving government two weeks in which to open the university, failure to which we shall go on a demonstration with parents. And the demonstration will be as follows: parents will gather at the roundabout in Riverside before CBU at 08:30 hours together with the students, and then we will walk and go and sit at the entrance of CBU the whole day without eating [or] drinking water. It will be a starve demonstration and if nothing is going to happen within two weeks, I am going to put in an application for this demonstration to show government that the parents, the students and the entire country are not happy about the current status of the closure of CBU,” he said.
“Further, we demand [and] I demand on behalf of the parents and the CBU community that all those children who have been expelled must be re-instated unconditionally. Those in government, what kind of parents are they? To go and expel a fourth-year student who is only remaining with one semester to complete his/her education. That is destroying and damaging the future of a student. We all error [and] nobody is an angel. So, I am appealing to this government to have a human face and think for those children that they have expelled from the university, most of them in their fourth year [or] their final year of university life.
He pleaded with government to unconditionally re-open the institution without further delay.
“I plead with you, President Lungu, if you have a conscience; if you are parent; if you are a lawyer; if you are an ex-university student; if you have been honoured by the university unfwileni abana babanenu inkumbu (have mercy on your fellow parent’s children). Ubuntu (humanity) should be at the core of every government or business, but our colleagues [in government] behave like niba Mwansa Kabinga, bashetani, abashakwata uluse (they have no mercy),” said Kambwili.
“I am calling for the unconditional opening of CBU. I am officially going to put in a (notice) for a demonstration by all parents and students at CBU. Parents and students have suffered a great deal and they have gone through the worst mental torture that every parent and child can go through as a result of the three months closure of the University, and nothing is being said about when the institution will be opened. I am reliably informed that it’s not about the students’ fracas, but that government has no money to run the institution. They have no money to pay students for their bursaries and that is why they are delaying! But I think people must realize that that university is a public university, which is run by taxpayers’ money and nobody – whether minister or President – has the right to close that institution indefinitely when the money that runs that university is from taxpayers and not President Lungu’s money or Nkandu Luo’s money!”