PF deputy national chairperson Davies Chama says the Patriotic Front party cannot think so low as to buy off candidates just for political competition.
And Chama says Vice-President Inonge Wina can give a lift to any person she feels fit to accompany her on a government programme.
In an interview, Monday, Chama said UPND spokesperson Cornelius Mweetwa was hallucinating when he claimed that PF offered US$1 million to Mpulungu UPND Alliance aspiring candidate, Leonard Mbao for him to withdraw his candidature.
He added that the PF were not desperate to buy off candidates, adding that no political seat was worth that much.
“US$1 million to buy a candidate, really? Is it worth that much for a parliamentary seat? Such that even if you calculate your salary and gratuity, it doesn’t even come to US$1 million. Is it really worth buying someone for that much, even for any political office for that matter? It’s not worth it. I don’t think that is what we can do as PF to buy someone just for political competition, it’s not worth it and I can’t imagine it myself. Maybe not even for K2, not even K1, for what, because you are competing to provide leadership for the country? Not even Hakainde is worth K1 to be eliminated from the ballot,” Chama said.
“I don’t think we as PF can think so low but you know what, when they (UPND) are short of stories to make of substance, they want to make wild accusations. I don’t think PF can think that low, I have never sat in a meeting myself where people are scheming to buy off candidates, no. If that was to happen I would be the first person to oppose. We can’t buy off a candidate, he has already filed his nominations and he is on the ballot so who can buy a person who is on the ballot already. They are just hallucinating, we are not desperate to buy off candidates.”
Chama further said PF wanted to focus on discussing issues that would improve the livelihood of Zambians.
“As Zambia we can’t move at this level of political discourse. I personally want to have a high trajectory of discussion with issues of substance that will transform the lives of the people of Zambia for the better. And that’s what we want to focus on as PF, unlike these issues where they are peddling lies all the time. For example, someone saying ‘no they want to kill me’ I just don’t understand. Busy hallucinating things that are not there like kids when they are playing,” he said.
Meanwhile, Chama said Vice-President Wina was not restricted on whom to give a lift when performing government business and other policies.
“The Vice President is still Vice President of the country until we go for elections. And the Vice President can give a lift to any person she feels fit to accompany her on a government programme, performing government business and other policies. She can give a lift to any person even to you, you can be given a lift to go and cover a story as a journalist by the Vice President or by the President for that matter. It has been done before, it is not the first time it’s been done,” he said.
“You remember when the late President Fredrick Chiluba, may his soul rest in peace, when he picked [late] President [Levy] Mwanawasa to be a candidate, he was given a lift by the late President Chiluba to go and campaign. So it’s not something out of the ordinary, it has been done before. So the Vice President can give a lift to anyone as she goes to conduct government business and it is done world over by sitting Presidents, sitting Vice Presidents, so there is no big deal about it. If they want, they can go to court to challenge it.”
On Sunday, Mweetwa claimed that the PF offered US$1 million to Mbao for him to withdraw his candidature so that former Presidential Affairs minister Freedom Sikazwe can retain his seat.
He further challenged PF to explain in what capacity presidential running mate, Prof Nkandu Luo used government facilities when she has ceased to be minister.