FORMER Kasama PF member of parliament Kelvin Sampa says he decided to leave the party because his efforts were not appreciated.

But PF Northern Province chairperson Chomba Chipili says Sampa was not a factor in the party.

In an interview, Sampa lamented that he was sidelined from participating in any activity in the recently held elections.

“I think every man has the right to make a decision and I think as a nation, you saw what I tried to do in terms of contributing to my former party, some of it, people turned a deaf ear to it. So how do I remain in a party that never appreciated my efforts? Whether I left before the election or I left now the fact of the matter is that the decision has been made,” said Sampa.

“I know it is a bitter pill to swallow especially for the people that are saying we lost. But for me, I am a very principled person. Look at even the elections, was I engaged? I never participated in these elections. I was never engaged in any activity so why would people be looking at my resignation as more of a problem as opposed to when I was left out everywhere?”

But in a separate interview, Chipili accused Sampa of being a liar and wondered why he did not leave the party when they were still in government.

“He is a liar! I engaged all the officials whether adopted or not, to come and beef up campaigns in Northern Province but he didn’t show up. He had intentions of going to the other camp. This vindicates me that, that is what was on his mind, it was a planned move. Maybe he is planning to go somewhere, you know politics but we know where he is going, he is a businessman. I can’t disclose where he is crossing over. Why did he not quit when PF was in power? He is a non-factor,” he said.

Chipili added that Sampa had not been involved in party activities after being left out of the adoption process.

He however said the party was still intact in the province.

“He stopped contributing to the party a long time ago. He was not active. From the time he was not adopted, he concentrated much on his businesses. During the campaign period, he was not seen in the province, Kasama in particular. He was not helping the party until we handed power to UPND. I have also been on the ground talking to members, they are the ones encouraging me not to go anywhere. They are encouraging me to be strong and focused. They are saying ‘let us build the party in Northern Province.’ I believe the party is still intact here,” said Chipili.

Meanwhile, in a statement, PF Northern Province youth chairman Erick Nsofu said it was cowardice for Sampa to leave the party just after they lost the elections.

“As Patriotic Front youths in Northern, we describe the move taken by former national youth chairman Kelvin Sampa to resign from their party immediately after we lost the elections as cowardice. As youths in Northern Province, we will remain loyal to the party as the Central Committee lead us through this transition after the loss of the August 12 general elections. We appreciate our former leader and party President Edgar Chagwa Lungu for firmly and ably leading the party since he took over from the last President Michael Sata and we will forever be loyal to him as a leader in the party. And he also enabled a smooth transition of power to the current President Hakainde Hichilema,” stated Nsofu.