PF vice-president Given Lubinda says he has no clue as to why people are aligning Faith Musonda to the PF, further questioning what the party is expected to do regarding these claims.
And Lubinda who is former justice minister has wondered why the police have suddenly become extremely active under UPND when they took weeks to effect an arrest when a minister of justice was beaten a few years ago.
Meanwhile, Lubinda says the PF are still conducting an introspection because they suspect that some of their own members might have voted against them.
Speaking during a media briefing, Monday, Lubinda said just because someone was aligned to the PF did not mean the former ruling party was aware of all their dealings.
“I can’t imagine how many Zambians could be aligned to the PF, they are many. And if a person is aligned to the PF, do we therefore know their dealings? No, we wouldn’t. So we in the Patriotic Front are not going to get involved in matters of that nature simply because somebody has chosen to say ‘oh this one supports the PF’, no. That is not a matter of concern to the Patriotic Front, it’s not. It is a matter to do with one individual citizen and why people are aligning her to us, I don’t know. I have no clue my friend. If somebody says that money is PF money or if she has said it’s PF money, then you can come to us. But simply to say ‘she is aligned to the PF’ so what, what should we do?” he asked.
And Lubinda wondered why the police had suddenly become extremely active and effecting arrests whenever UPND members complained to them.
“We have gotten disturbing reports of how the police have become extremely active, very active. A few years ago when the Minister of Justice was beaten, the police took weeks to effect an arrest. Now whenever a UPND member goes to the police and points at anybody and says ‘this one beat me during the campaigns’, that person is arrested. As I speak now, 10 youths in Kasama have been held for more than 10 days without bond purely because some UPND members went to the police and said ‘these youths beat me up’,” he said.
“This is not only common in Northern Province, it is common across the country. Police, remember that what goes up, comes down. What goes around, comes around. Remember that you are going to be held personally liable. Yes if a person has committed an offence, charge them, take them to court, let them go and prove themselves innocent. Don’t prove them guilty before they are given an opportunity to prove themselves innocent.”
Meanwhile, Lubinda said suspected that some of their own members voted against them.
“How do you know that all PF members voted against you, how would you possibly know? We in the Patriotic Front are still doing our own introspection because we also suspect that some of the members of the PF might have voted against us. And how do you yourself know that whoever is a member of the PF is against you? After all, are you only going to rule over those who voted for you and throw away all of us that voted against you, no! It is your duty President Bally to make sure that you provide security to every citizen irrespective of how you think they voted,” he said.
Lubinda challenged President Hakainde Hichilema to prove that he was not playing double standards by pledging to restore the rule of law when political violence had continued.
“We were giving thanks yesterday (Sunday) and ignoring the fact that as we speak now, political violence has continued. As we speak now, people whose eyes were gouged have not seen justice. As we speak now, hundreds of citizens are on the run, they are not with their children, they are not with their families. Our relatives in North-Western Province are hiding here in Lusaka. We went and said thank you to God. Are you sure those people [that] are hiding should also join in saying thank you to God?” he questioned.
“As we speak now, there are many videos that have become viral of young people being tortured by known members of the ruling party. I listened to President Hakainde yesterday and I have listened to him ever since he was inaugurated and the one thing he keeps talking about is ‘rule of law’. President Hakainde, please prove to me that you are not playing double standards with the rule of law. That you are using it purely to attract public attention and yet in the comfort of darkness you are sending your people to harass our people. Prove me wrong, I call upon you President Bally, wherever you are, prove me wrong.”
Lubinda said the numerous election petitions by UPND losing candidates were aimed at destabilising the Patriotic Front.
“We have a number of petitions that are taking place. I will not commit to the merits and demerits of these petitions. The only thing I will say is that there are so many petitions against us and this is politics, all of it aimed at destabilising the Patriotic Front, aimed at gripping the Patriotic Front. My message to President Bally is that ubepelefye (you are just lying) because we are not going to be destabilised by these petitions,” he said.
“We shall face all these petitions with the honour and dignity that we have. However, we want to call upon you again President Bally to make sure that your people do not interfere with our witnesses. We got reports that in Mpulungu, people who are lined up as witnesses in the petition by Freedom Sikazwe are now being called by the police and have been accused of beating up people. Why is that happening? Please stop interfering with witnesses. If we don’t stop this, if we don’t stop the torture, I can assure you that what has dawned on Zambia is the reign of terror.”
Meanwhile, commenting on the thanksgiving prayers held on Sunday, Lubinda said the event was organized by what he would refer to as the “UPND Alliance”.
“The event took place yesterday and yes we were yet again vindicated. We were vindicated by noting that the leaders of that event are also the same people who led the UPND alliance in opposition of bill 10. The same ones who were speaking yesterday are the same ones who spoke against the PF on the subject of bill 10. Some of you my dear friends and my dear citizens will remember that the people who were leading the thanksgiving prayer service yesterday are exactly the same ones who led the so-called Church-led roadmap on dialogue a few years ago,” said Lubinda.
“So those other leaders of the three Church Mother Bodies who told us that there was no need for us to attend, thank you very much for your advice because as it turned out, that Church thanksgiving event was an event organized by what I would like to refer to as the UPND alliance. This exercise was an exercise of condemning one and laundering another. I’m not sure God would receive such thanksgiving.”