UPND chairperson for elections Gary Nkombo says the ruling party will be shocked if Kabwata residents do not vote for them.

In an interview, Nkombo said UPND was confident it would retain the seat, arguing that the party had not seen any reason why Kabwata residents wouldn’t vote for them.

“You know, elections in nature are very tricky but I can tell you that all indicators are that the people of Kabwata have no reason to change their minds from the way it was on the 12th of August last year. So we haven’t really seen any reason for them to change and we respect them. So because of that, we remain extremely confident, there is a good positive response from the residents of Kabwata on both our party as well as the candidates. So at this point in time, it will be very surprising and shocking if the results went any other way,” he said.

He said the recent victory in Sokontwe ward of Milenge District in Luapula had shown that the party had no regional strongholds.

“I want you to be reminded that the people of Milenge and also Nalolo last week spoke out through the ballot in what we think is a deep appreciation of how we are settling down. Their patience to allow us to settle down is the reason why we collected those two seats in what we could call the PF strong old, in the case of Milenge. So we remain extremely confident,” Nkombo said.

“We have been saying even before the elections and also we continue to say that Zambia is UPND stronghold and not the region. We know no region ourselves, we just know that now Zambia has become the stronghold of Mr Hakainde Hichilema and also the UPND. Nothing will change it, not for now. PF has always been our competitor, but from the results in Milenge, you can see that they were coming on a distant third from the Socialist Party. So that is it for PF, it is it and the earlier they realise that this is it, the better for them. Because they will continue to suffer some heartaches.”

And commenting PF members’ assertions that UPND lied about their campaign promises, Nkombo said UPND was reducing the temperature of the hot soup that the country was put in by PF.

“Those are the last kicks of a dead horse. Zambians understand economics now. They all understand that economically, things sometimes get worse before they get better. We did make a promise, we still have a mandate for five years, so talk to us in four years time. No matter how much they want to say, the truth has no disguise that they are the ones who put us in this lane, the PF are the ones who put us in this hot soup. So we will have to reduce the temperature of that hot soup. In doing so, we have to go through some pain before we see the day,” said Nkombo.