PATRIOTIC Front chairman for elections Yamfwa Mukanga says according to the party constitution, the Central Committee is allowed to publicise its preferred presidential candidate.
And Mukanga says the party is not risking anything by fielding President Edgar Lungu as its presidential candidate because its lawyers have done their homework.
In an interview, Mukanga argued that the Central Committee was within its right to have a preferred candidate.
“Our constitution is such that the Central Committee also decides on the candidate. According to our constitution, we should make it public. There will be filing in of nominations on Wednesday for anybody who wants to contest as President but for us as Central Committee, we also have a candidate and what we are saying is that ‘we are rallying behind Edgar Chagwa Lungu, that is our candidate’ while the other people who want to contest are free, let them push in the papers. It is not the Central Committee who will elect, it is the people and they will decide who they want to vote for. It is a democracy,” Mukanga said.
When asked if the party was not risking anything by endorsing the incumbent Head of State as its candidate when his eligibility was still in question, Mukanga said PF lawyers had done their homework.
“We are not risking. Our lawyers have also done their homework. Whoever wants to do anything, let them go ahead but we are also prepared for the consequences,” said Mukanga.
Last week, PF secretary general Davies Mwila said the party’s central committee had unanimously endorsed President Lungu as its preferred candidate for the position of party president at the forthcoming virtual elective general conference.
“I am pleased to announce that the central committee of the PF has unanimously endorsed President Lungu as our preferred candidate for the position of party president at the forthcoming general conference. This is in line with the democratic principles in accordance with article 52 of the party constitution. I wish to note that the decision of the central committee does not stop anyone from contesting the position of party president. Anyone is free to contest. I wish to inform members of the party and the general public that the PF yesterday held a Central Committee meeting that was chaired by His Excellency President Edgar Chagwa Lungu, President of the party to discuss a number of issues. As announced earlier, the PF will hold its general conference on the 10th and 11th of April 2021, the conference will elect the President of the Party and members of the Central Committee. All those who are interested in contesting the position of the party president should submit their application letters to the party secretary general from Wednesday 7th to Thursday 8th April 2021 from 08:00 to 17:00,” said Mwila.