PATRIOTIC Front national mobilisation committee chairperson Richard Musukwa says the donations of cement he made to a Catholic Church in Chililabombwe District was consistent with the guidance he issued.
On Sunday, PF secretary general Davies Mwila led party members into donating over K300,000 cash at St Pius Catholic Church in Chililabombwe.
At the same event, Musukwa also donated 500 pockets of cement worth K70,000, pledged to buy a bus and further donated K10,000 cash.
Last month, Musukwa, however, had told party members that President Edgar Lungu was disturbed by the recent public display and dispensing of huge volumes of cash by some PF members during mobilisation engagements.
He now explained that PF members’ cash donations were done within their means.
“They are building a school so I donated 500 bags of cement, not cash donations. I donated building materials as I have guided, consistent with the guidance. I also pledged a parish bus because I bought a bus for my church and they were complaining that I did not buy for them. I demonstrated the guidance I made by donating materials. There were various people who were donating, don’t misconstrue the directive I made; the directive I made was money that was being paraded…K200,000 and what have you. If people were fundraising, what were they going to do? What is wrong with someone donating K1,000? It is within their means,” Musukwa said in an interview.
He argued that Mwila did not donate cash.
“No (Mwila) did not donate cash. Were you there? How can he do that? The cash money, which they were donating even you can donate, K1,000. They were donating within people’s means not people donating ama K200,000 on the pulpit, no. That is polluting political space. So, if they are going to construct a school, how are they going to construct a school if they have no money?” wondered Musukwa.
In his statement released last month, Musukwa had banned all PF members and aspiring candidates from disbursing cash at public gatherings, adding that the Head of State was disturbed by the practice.
“President Edgar Lungu is disturbed by the recent public display and dispensing of volumes of cash by some PF members during mobilisation engagements. The Patriotic Front has with immediate effect banned its members and aspiring candidates from disbursing cash at public gatherings as a means of mobilising the electorate. All forms of public display of cash during meetings is against the ideological foundations of PF as a pro-poor party. All forms of support to churches, marketeers and other interest groups should be in the form of projects and welfare programmes,” stated Musukwa.