PF acting national chairperson Davies Chama says central committee member Paul Moonga should desist from attacking party members or he will face sanctions.

Commenting on Moonga’s remarks that acting PF president Given Lubinda should resign because he had failed to raise money for the party conference, Chama said the responsibility to raise money could not be placed on Lubinda alone.

“It has now become almost a habit for my colleague, a senior member of the party, he is a member of the central committee, to be attacking other members of the central committee. It is unfortunate, if he has issues, there is a platform as a member of the central committee to bring these things to the party. You can’t entirely blame honourable Given Lubinda as acting president and give him the responsibility to raise money, what about himself as a senior member of the party? Why should we put it upon one individual? This is a collective responsibility as members of the party to ensure that we put our heads together to raise money for a general conference,” he said.

“So this habit of all the time trying to portray like you want to separate yourself from the rest is very suspicious. We have a platform as members of the party to discuss these issues and see how best we can handle them. I can’t call [for] the resignation of the acting president, purely putting the burden on one man that he has failed to raise the money, then all of us as senior members of the party have failed to raise the money. All of us should step down including himself, but if we had to do that, that is being irresponsible.”

Asked whether Moonga’s remarks would invite sanctions, Chama responded in the affirmative, adding that the party had rules and regulations.

“Of course, the party has rules and regulations and it has a constitution to follow. He knows that if us, as senior members of the party, what example are we showing to the junior members of the party. Even if you were not part of the meeting that decided that we hold a meeting in June, but the fact the party makes a decision, the central committee made that decision that the general conference will be held in June. We are bound, I for one was not in that meeting but I am bound by the decision made by my colleagues. So, if I have to question it and have a different view, I have to wait for the central committee for me to express my views,” he said.

“His comments are very unfortunate. Most of his comments are not very good and I think he should desist, he is a senior member and he knows. I don’t know why he is constantly doing it. Maybe he wants to attract sanctions so that he cries foul that ‘I was disciplined by the party and that is why probably I have left’. I think we should stop doing this to ourselves. He knows what he is doing is wrong.”

On Moonga’s remarks that it was unfortunate that a party that ruled for 10 years was struggling to find money to host a general conference, Chama said being government did not mean that a party was supposed to have money.

He added that the party spent money on the August general elections, legal fees, among other areas.

“Money should be there, maybe he knows better. We just came from an election and the party spent money on that election. If the money should be there, maybe he knows where the money should be and who is keeping that money. He should also be aware of what the party has been going through from the time we lost elections, he should know, he is aware of what has been happening. Maybe he has not been pursued by this government, he has been spared. The party has been followed by a lot of people who are pursuing the party for purported services that were rendered to the party, it has been sued. Also the ruling government continues to persecute even members of the party, trying to destabilize the party. So we are trying to find our feet, to find our balance. There are a lot of things that are happening, he has not been visited, so he doesn’t know the situation we find ourselves in. Why do you have to rush to the media to attack your fellow party, what is your interest?” Chama wondered.

“To say that the party was in government for 10 years, where is the money? He should come to the party and ask. The fact that you are in government does not mean that you are supposed to have money, are you supposed to steal money from government? Is that what he is implying that the party should have been getting money from government? We are just coming from a general election, the party spent money on that general election. There are by-elections that have been taking place and money has been spent on these by-elections. There has been legal costs, a lot of legal matters, in petitions, a lot of petitions, the party has been spending money on these petitions, to the extent of councilors have been petitioned, appearing even in the Constitutional Court, is it free of charge? Some of these members are represented by the lawyers, the party has been running up and down to make sure that our members are protected and it costs money. If he wants to bury his head in the sand maybe because he has not been visited by the new dawn government, for reasons best known to the new dawn government and to himself.”

He reiterated that the party could not hold a general conference without money.

“You can’t hold a general conference without money. How do you bring 2, 000 people, even 1,000 people together to elect a president and you don’t have money to transport them. This country is huge. Later on, if you transport them you need to feed them and take them back, so it will cost money. So we need to look at how we are going to raise money so that we can hold a successful general conference,” said Chama.