PF deputy chief whip Tutwa Ngulube says more UPND members of parliament and councilors will ditch the opposition party because the party has outdated leadership.
And the Kabwe law maker says he is in talks with the Ministry of Health to have Kabwe on lock down to ensure that mass screening is done.
On Saturday, UPND chairperson for elections Garry Nkombo said that the party had dissolved the Western Province Provincial committee and accused the PF of bribing its councilors to resign from the party.
Nkombo said the party established an interim committee headed by Nkeyema UPND member of parliament Kapelwa Mbangweta in a bid to stop the PF from buying and targeting councilors in that province.
“For this purpose, we have observed that Western Province has become a hype of activities of the PF buying councilors and causing unnecessary by elections. Consequent to that, our journey for intra party elections will begin with Western Province. Though the authority that has been designated to me by the secretary general of the party, I am here by announcing pursuant to the requirement of the law that we should have elections; I am announcing the dissolution of Western Province provincial committee in order to pave way for election activities that will culminate countrywide. Once we are done with Western Province, we will go to other provinces,” said Nkombo.
“In view of the misbehavior of the PF buying councilors and targeting that province, we have decided that we are going to put a care taker committee which will be strictly there for administrative purposes only. Having said so, the dissolved committee will be at liberty to re-contest their positions as dictated by our own party constitution of the UPND. We want to make an appeal to foster unity as we go through this process of revitalizing ourselves in readiness for the upcoming general election in 2021.”
But commenting on this in an interview, Ngulube said people were defecting because the UPND leadership was outdated.
“The UPND has been losing councilors since time immemorial and you see they have this cry of actually claiming their people are being bribed we want to know who is bribing these people and how much is he paying them? You see, the UPND should realise that their leadership is outdated; starting from the President he has overstayed; he has actually failed to provide a succession structure at all levels. He has even failed to appoint a vice-president so he should not say or they should not accuse anybody of bribing the councilors,” Ngulube said.
“The councilors are just fed up and tired! You can imagine being a councilor not getting any help from anyone. When you want to work with government which can bring development, they are suspending you. They have frustrated a lot of government projects even places where government wants to bring development, they are actually threatening their councilors with expulsion. So those councilors that are actually resigning from UPND are actually waking them up they must realise that their leadership is outdated and that time is up let them just fold up and continue working with government.”
He predicted that more UPND MPs and councilors would ditch the party.
“We anticipate that even most members of parliament will ditch the UPND, most councilors will ditch the UPND and more council chairpersons because they failed to provide leadership. You cannot have a leadership that is always insulting government; you cannot have a leadership that is always wanting to fight when it is not necessary. The people are sick and tired of an opposition that has failed to criticize government based on policies they should be saying ‘we as an alternative government we are going to do this’, they should be in a position to show what will do as an alternative as opposed to just embarrassing government and accusing government of corruption. Other than that, there is nothing, they have nothing to offer even today even if they came into power the UPND will not offer any solutions to the people of Zambia,” he said.
“The Patriotic Front has actually done everything the people wanted to be anticipating to be done, how the President himself has actually dealt with most of these challenges that he has faced. In a short period of time the President has actually been tested by droughts, by floods and gassing and everything. He has shown spirited leadership. The UPND has not shown how they could have dealt with the gassing if they were in power. They have not shown as how they could have dealt with the load shedding when they in power. They have not shown us how they could have dealt with all these other challenges that the country is facing. So to us an opposition that has no vision is as good as a dead opposition!”
And Ngulube said he was negotiating a Kabwe lockdown with the the Ministry of Health.
“We have spoken to the Minister of Health and we are calling for a lock down of all those areas where the virus came from. We are just not calling for a lockdown, we are also going to make sure that we distribute food and the necessary requirements. For instance, I have organised through DMMU 4,000 bags of mealie meal which I intend to distribute to all those people who will be affected by the lockdown. We are just waiting for clearance from the Ministry of Health then we can quickly move in and shut down Kamushanga and all those other compounds and allow the Ministry to conduct mass screening and contact tracing while people are in their homes. We won’t allow anyone to leave until the Ministry has done their job,” said Ngulube.