RAINBOW Party general secretary Wynter Kabimba says the people of Zambia still love the Patriotic Front.
And Kabimba says the problem he has with Zambians is that everyone, including those who ate with former president Edgar Lungu every day, now wants to proclaim themselves as UPND.
Meanwhile, Kabimba says some of his senior colleagues in PF did not promote the electoral partnership with Rainbow Party because they thought they would lose their jobs.
Speaking when he featured on Diamond TV, Tuesday, Kabimba said the PF pushed away Zambians due to the systemic indiscipline in that party.
“It is not in my nature or character to discuss individuals. That is an entire matter of the PF, whether or not the Secretary General was effective, the judgment must come from the rank and file of the PF. I am reluctant to comment because I am not part of the rank and file of the PF to pass judgment on their Secretary General Mr [Davies] Mwila. It was clear from my side with the little experience I have in Zambian politics, that the PF had alienated people. It had pushed people away from itself. The public did not withdraw from PF but they were pushed away by PF because of the systemic indiscipline that was in the party,” he said.
“The harassment of people travelling at bus stops, collecting of illegal levies at bus stops, markets and I had tried to correct this scourge when I was SG. I sent a circular round that this must stop and that was the circular that brought about the groundswell of demonstrations against me. ‘Can I accept the presidency in PF today’? That is again an internal matter for PF. ‘Why didn’t we just dissolve and join PF’? The UPND Alliance partners, why didn’t they dissolve to join UPND instead of going into an Alliance?”
Kabimba, however, said the people of Zambia still loved the PF.
“The view that I took looking at the election was that it would tip either way but I thought that with the principle of incumbency, the PF had a higher chance of winning the election. Because of this alienation of people by PF, the people became disgruntled, the people became angry. People loved PF and they still love PF even today. I could be wrong and I am not being self righteous. They loved PF and if you look at the numbers they still have a mandate from the people,” Kabimba said.
“No political party has been in opposition with the number of seats that PF has today. When UNIP lost to the MMD in 1991, they had 21 parliamentary seats. They did not have as many seats that PF has today. So that in itself shows you that there is an aspect of PF that it can remedy to be a strong opposition. I am saying this as an outsider and I am saying this with the little experience that I have with politics in this country.”
And Kabimba observed that everyone now wanted to proclaim themselves as UPND for convenience’s sake.
“Edgar Lungu must be commended for his humility and selflessness to ensure that the correct thing is done. And he can leave office peacefully and hand over office to President Hakainde Hichilema peacefully and allow this country to continue on the path of a peaceful decision. I cannot question the judgment of Zambians. If they made the right choice, the future will tell and if they made the wrong choice the future will tell and I will leave that to posterity. The Zambian people themselves will answer that question on 12th August 2026,” he said.
“The problem that I have with this country is everyone wants to proclaim themselves as UPND for convenience’s sake including the people that were eating with Edgar [Lungu] every day. All of the sudden, conveniently they are UPND. They will do the same to Hakainde Hichilema when the time comes because time changes. There is nothing exciting about what is happening today, it has happened before. I listen to speeches and I tell myself Wynter you have heard this before. So we wish the UPND the best of luck but I am not moved by the speeches.”
Meanwhile, Kabimba said some senior colleagues in the PF did not promote the electoral partnership with the Rainbow Party because they thought they would lose their jobs.
“It is water under the bridge and what we can learn from this is that what we in the Rainbow party thought went wrong, some of our very senior colleagues in the PF party thought that we actually got into an electoral partnership with the PF because we want jobs and that they may lose their jobs as a result of this partnership. So they were not amenable to promoting this partnership between the Rainbow party and themselves. I will give you an example, I received a report that when Rainbow party officials that were on the campaign trail went into Luanshya to go and join the PF rank and file there and the candidate, the candidate said to the Rainbow party senior officials that ‘I do not need you here, I do not need the Rainbow party here. I am very popular with the people, the people love me and I have already won this seat’,” said Kabimba.
“That attitude put off the Rainbow party officials that were in the field. And when they reported that incident to me, I told them to withdraw and leave him. He forgot that we are in a system of ‘first past the post’. So you can actually win an election in a constituency even at the presidential level with one vote and you can also win an election with one vote. So what happened in Luanshya, the man lost an election. So that is just one incident of what went wrong. If you understand how the system works, you would not turn away someone who wants to help you.”