By Edwin Mbulo, Chambwa Moonga and Melony Chisanga

ZAMBIANS should prevent Nkandu Luo from becoming Vice-President because she is so obsessed with tribalism, says Luxon Kazabu.

And PF presidential candidate Edgar Lungu says not everyone will accept Professor Nkandu Luo as his running mate.

The former deputy livestock and fisheries minister said Zambia needs a person who can bring back the One Zambia One Nation motto.

“Today is a very sad day because of the decision by President Edgar Lungu to pick Nkandu Luo as his running mate. Yes, it is a PF affair but also a national issue in that should they carry the day she will become a [Republican] vice-president,” he said. “Nkandu Luo is not the right person to be a potential vice-president. Why do I say so? She is so obsessed with tribalism and we don’t need such a person to occupy the post of Vice-President. She is on record and I will quote her verbatim, ‘Kuti mwaleta shani umutonga ukumipyana (How can you bring a Tonga to takeover?)’. She told a meeting at a by-election in Chilubi. At another time when she learnt that Bizwell Mutale was interested in contesting Munali she made another tribal remark and said, ‘Bizwell Mutale kabiye uko kubu Tonga not kuno ku Munali (Bizwell Mutale go to Tongaland, not here in Munali)’.”

Kazabu said Professor Luo’s remarks have been engraved in him and he would never forget.

“Zambians need to open their eyes and ears and prevent her from becoming Vice-President because she will terribly divide this country which is already divided. We need someone who can unify the country and bring back the motto of One Zambia One Nation,” said Kazabu.

Meanwhile, the President says: “iyi teya baice (this isn’t for upstarts).

At Mulungushi International Conference Centre in Lusaka yesterday, President Lungu opened the doors to file in as a presidential candidate.

He presented immediate past Munali PF member of parliament and fisheries and livestock minister Professor Luo, as his running mate.

Soon after, Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) chairperson justice Esau Chulu declared that President Lungu, together with Prof Luo, have been validly nominated.

In his remarks, President Lungu said: “I know that you waited ambitiously to know who my running mate will be.”

“Now you know [that] it is one Professor Nkandu Luo. A very solid woman, politically accomplished and of course, professionally that is something else,” President Lungu said. “So, I’m very happy…. But I can tell you one thing; not all of you will accept her. It is very important to know that diversity of opinion and views is what makes the world go round.”

He told those who do not agree with his choice of Prof Luo to wait for their time.

“For me and my party, PF, it’s Lungu na (and) Luo. I know [that] some of you fear her because she’s too strong, too forthright and too intelligent. But that’s why I went for her, anyway. So, gentlemen and ladies, PF remains one.”

President Lungu also eulogised Vice-President Inonge Wina, for her resolve as a leader.

“I cannot complete my address this morning without saying thank you to madam Inonge Wina, the Vice-President who has been there for me and the party, from the time we started when Mr Sata left us,” President Lungu noted. “And I’m sure she will be there for us to ensure that we learn on her expertise and patience, which is one of her hallmarks.”

Meanwhile, as President Lungu was waiting for ECZ staff to verify his nomination forms, party officials took turns in congratulating him and Prof Luo.

As Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit (DMMU) national coordinator Chanda Kabwe extended his congratulations, President Lungu responded, with a giggle, that: “iyi teya baice. twala butuka nabo (we’ll compete with them).”

PF secretary general Davies Mwila he said those in the PF are very excited, “your Excellency with your choice.”

He noted that it was the prerogative of the President to appoint his running mate.

“He doesn’t need to ask anyone. Uwatemwa Lungu atemwa na (he who loves Lungu also loves the) running mate. That is the song that we are going to go with, so that we can win the 12th August general election.”

Mwila stressed that the PF would win the August 12 poll.

“We are winning the 12 August general election. On behalf of the party, the structures, I want to assure you that from today onwards, we’ll go flat out to ensure that we emerge victorious on 12th August this year,” said Mwila.

Later in the day, Third Liberation Movement president Enock Roosevelt Tonga successfully filed in his nomination forms.

Tonga’s running mate is Bright Chomba.

The duo’s filing in was punctuated by a delay of not less than two hours, as Tonga and Chomba humorously ran up and down, trying to get supporting documentation for filing in.

The filing in was scheduled for 10:15 hours to 11:15 hours, but it was not until 14:40 hours that Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) chairperson justice and presidential returning officer Esau Chulu walked into the designated nomination centre to attend to Tonga’s presidential bid.

Once he, aided by Commission chief electoral officer Kryticous Patrick Nshindano, had authenticated the forms for the duo, justice Chulu declared them valid.

By press time, People’s Alliance for Change (PAC) president Andyford Mayele Banda was within the grounds of Mulungushi International Conference Centre, waiting for his turn to file in nomination forms.

Speaking after the nominations, Tonga said the battle begins now and that “one Edgar Chagwa Lungu and his partner in crime Hakainde Hichilema must be ready to exit through the door of shame”.


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