UPND deputy secretary general Gertrude Imenda says PF has been exaggerating the price of mealie meal, arguing that although the prices could be lower, they are not very high.

Commenting on PF national chairperson for women Kampamba Mulenga’s remarks that PF can bounce back in 2026 because the ruling party had failed, Imenda said UPND had delivered most of its campaign promises in the last six months.

“People who lick their wounds have a lot of things to say, including comforting themselves. For them to say ‘UPND has failed to deliver within six months’, have they seen what we have done? Look at free education, has UPND delivered? Yes. We have made the payment for retirees who have been languishing in poverty for more than 20 years. Hakainde Hichilema has come with his party and we have paid the retirees. What about council workers who have been paid? Since I was a girl, we have been talking about decentralisation, it has never been implemented,” she said.

“The UPND came and actualised this which has only been lip service. The CDF has increased to 25.7 million in each constituency so that people make their own developmental decisions. Looking at all this and they want to say Hakainde Hichilema has failed? What exactly has he failed? They are saying people will die of hunger? They have been exaggerating the price of mealie meal. I went to buy it three days ago at a shopping mall somewhere; roller meal is below K130 and about K125 or something. Breakfast [meali meal] is the one which is going at K145 or something like that. So what hunger are they talking about? We have promised jobs but jobs are coming.”

Imenda argued that the PF was exaggerating the prices of mealie meal.

“It is not just white collar jobs of sitting in the office. Those are not jobs we are talking about. We have them already in stadiums and Intercity and other places. We are employing the young people to look after the stations to collect money for the council. The money which was being collected by PF cadres and put in the pockets. The so called big shots [who] met on the Copperbelt in the so called rebranding were benefiting at the expense of local authorities. Mind you we have been given a five-year mandate. So for someone to say UPND has failed on their promises but within six months we have done all that and yet we have five years? Come one, let us be fair,” she said.

“They are calling for early elections ‘otherwise Zambians will die of hunger’, even the prices of mealie meal that they are saying are very high, they are just exaggerating in their mouths. The situation on the ground is that yes, they could be lower but they are not very high. Surely, it is lower than the K200 we were paying I think in 2019 or 2020 under the PF. So are they the same PF saying they want to come back? UPND inherited empty coffers and high debt actually.”

Imenda said Zambians would not allow the PF to bounce back into power.

“Even with the empty coffers, look at the achievements I have mentioned. So surely, calling for early elections for what? You think Zambians have forgotten? Zambians are still nursing the wounds of PF’s brutality in every way. UPND has made sure that the country is reunited and has representation from all provinces across the country. Who is going to vote for them because Zambians cannot be taken for a ride. So they lost but do not want to acknowledge because they did wrong things and Zambians have not forgotten. You think Zambians can agree to go back to that brutal regime? Believe it or not, this economy is going to pick up. So they want to come again and benefit from a revamped economy by HH so that they come and plunder? No. Zambians will allow them to do that,” said Imenda.