PATRIOTIC Front secretary general Davies Mwila says the party needs President Edgar Lungu to continue ruling beyond 2021 because he is not tribal.

Speaking during the Choma PF general conference, Saturday, Mwila told ruling party officials not to emulate UPND Hakainde Hichilema and his party in terms of tribalism.

“The issues of violence, our friends, they like violence but us as a party, our President has been preaching peace in this country. And we want peace in this country which we have been enjoying for the past 57 years and I want to say that you cannot develop if there is no peace. So colleagues, let us avoid violence, mumvela (are you listening)? I know the NGOs have not been talking about the UPND, they came to Serenje, Mpika they harassed our people, they assaulted our people all the NGOs were quiet. It doesn’t mean that we cannot reiterate no, we can, we have the capacity but we don’t want to. We are in government and we have to lead by example,” Mwila said.

“Ask them when they are going to have the convention? If someone wants to be a President of the country, he must be democratic, if you are not democratic when you are in opposition, what more when in government? I am happy the way you have elected the people, you did not look at someone’s tribe. Let us not behave like UPND and Hakainde Hichilema, us, we are not tribal. Jack Mwiimbu is leader of government business, he is from Southern Province, chief whip of the party Garry Nkombo is from southern province but we have MPs from Western, North Western, what about if you give them power? They will just be relatives throughout. That’s why we need our President to continue beyond 2021 because our president is not tribal. Us we are ready for next year’s election as a party.”

He wondered why NGOs did not condemn the UPND for not holding intra-party elections.

“Our duty as leaders is to explain the developmental projects that we have taken in Southern Province to convince the people that surely we have delivered. We have a by-election in Maramba and I expect us to win, no excuses. Our party has been a democratic party and we have been holding elections. This is the seventh province and we are remaining with Northern, Luapula and Lusaka and we want to show the world that we are democratic. All NGOs that have been quiet, they have not condemned other political parties that have not been holding elections. The UPND, Hakainde Hichilema, has been there for more than 20 years. When did they hold their general conference? Where are the NGOs? They can’t talk about it, they only want to talk about PF which is not democratic. Our people have been competing. I am very impressed with Southern Province because there was competition,” he said.

And Mwila said the ruling party had the numbers.

“I announced to the country before they started the mobile registration of cards, when they announced voter registration, I said we are ready. Yesterday, Hichilema was crying, he was saying why should Luapula compete with Southern, we have the numbers. We are mobilising our people to register as voters. ECZ has indicated that they will do an extension. Us we are ready, come next year. If Luapula can be 700[000], better, if Eastern can be one million, better for us, if Muchinga can be, 450[000], if Northern can be 650[000] aha look at the numbers. So leave Hakainde, let him continue complaining,” said Mwila.