By Oliver Chisenga

IT’S shameful that a man who called President Edgar Lungu a thief has now been given a chopper to campaign for him, says Edward Mumbi.

In an interview, Mumbi has urged traditional leaders to refrain from being used by the PF to canvas votes in the Northern circuit.

The NDC vice-president warned the PF to tread carefully with Chishimba Kambwili.

“Not too long ago Kambwili called President Lungu a dog, a drug dealer and thief but today they have given him a chopper to tell lies against Hakainde Hichilema and Tongas. He called him a dog from Chawama, not too long ago and it’s on record but what has happened to the dog today? …Those are words from Kambwili, they are not my words. It’s not fair. Kambwili is a pathological liar who by any standard should be left to be where he is, the political dust bin,” Mumbi said.

He wondered how a sane party and government would use a convict to campaign for them adding that the act was an assault to the Judiciary.

He noted that Kambwili’s message to people, who have since been put-off by his antics, was to discredit Hichilema.

“Kambwili does not understand the decency and genuineness in that gentleman, Hakainde Hichilema. He has never stayed even for about six hours in total with Hakainde Hichilema so he can’t claim to know him. Hakainde Hichilema is a decent man who has succeeded as an individual,” he said.

Mumbi wondered what message Kambwili was taking to the electorates in campaigning for President Lungu.

“What message are we sending to the world that you can get a convict to campaign for you just to continue being President of a country…then you must be a team with uncouth behaviour all of you; it’s very strange. What kind of a country are we?” he wondered. “As the UPND Alliance and indeed as NDC, we call upon the international community, the European Union, the

African Union, SADC, United Nations and all accredited missions to Zambia, all embassies to inquire into this issue. You cannot use a prisoner to campaign for you. What message are you sending to our own Judiciary? Basically you are saying they are irrelevant…”

Mumbi said the use of Kambwili to campaign for the President was a serious omission both at law and morality.

He urged President Lungu to relook at the omission and release Kambwili from the campaign circuit.

Mumbi further said he does not like the PF’s conduct of resisting change at all costs to an extent of using convicted people to get the vote.

“It is embarrassing really. I have a lot of respect for Edgar Lungu but you cannot use state resources and give to a convict to go and start campaigning for you. Those are state resources, it’s not personal money,” he said. “He is a President for the Republic of Zambia, he is a President for all of us. So you cannot use taxpayers’ money to give a criminal convict to campaign for you. I am a taxpayer, that’s my money too.”

And Mumbi warned traditional leaders being used by the PF to sow division in the country that governments come and go.

“Don’t bring in chiefs into the political arena, please stay away. We don’t want to insult our chiefs but now you are bringing the chiefs in the firing range – an arena where we should start disrespecting them. We respect our chiefs, any chief in this country are people that we should respect,” Mumbi said. “It’s a shame that Mr Kambwili has now started meeting our Bemba chiefs. We know how Mr Kambwili operates, it is a shame in the sense that we know that even my own Paramount Chief Chitimukulu was actually a casualty of the PF administration when PF came into power. Paramount Chief Chitimukulu was almost being dethroned and this was actually something that was spearheaded by Mr Sata using Professor Nkandu Luo. She is there today, the statements are there; members of the press are very good at keeping your stories in the archives so you know the story of Nkandu Luo and Chief Chitimukulu. My advice to the chiefs is that please stay away from politics. We are all your sons and daughters. We started with UNIP. UNIP went, MMD came in. MMD went, PF has come in and PF is going. There is no doubt about that, PF is going.”

Mumbi said chiefs are not politicians.

“They are not voted for. It’s God’s position for them, and you are chief by birth. So please stay away from politics. We know poverty does not choose but surely even if you are impoverished, my chiefs…no, even us who are in the opposition can help you. We are your subjects, so stay away from politics because we are also your children…that’s my advice to my Bemba chiefs,” said Mumbi.

A helicopter has been assigned to Kambwili which he is using to fly places to campaign for President Lungu while discrediting the UPND.


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