Bembas will not be blackmailed by PF govt

No amount of threats, betrayal and blackmail by the PF government will work against the Bemba speaking people of Northern Province in order to force them support President Michael Sata and his government, says Lubanseh  Independent Member of Parliament Patrick Mucheleka

In an interview yesterday, Mr. Mucheleka said that it was shocking that the PF was scheming to blackmail the Bemba speaking people by promising them development if they voted for PF candidates in the region.

Mr. Mucheleka said that the Bembas were strong kingdoms and no wonder they have supported their paramount chief Chitimukulu even at a time the PF government degazetted him.

“We know that the PF is scheming blackmail, yes and that is they are trying to blackmail us and that will not happen. With or without the PF we will be able to meet the people and explain what is required for development,” said Mr. Mucheleka. He said that the Bemba kingdom was a strong grouping which had survived serious threats starting from the colonial times when the Roy Welesnky administration wanted to subdue them.

“If the colonial masters failed to subdue us, Kaunda failed to subdue us, Chiluba failed to subdue us who is PF today? My grandfather Chitimukulu Chitampakwa suffered when President Sata was minister Without Portfolio in the MMD and our current Chitimukulu is going through the same process under President Sata now. We survived, we emerged much stronger and we shall emerge much stronger than ever before,” Mr. Muchekela.

He explained that the only time the Bembas had peace was under the late President Levy Mwanawasa and his predecessor former President Rupiah Banda.

“The only time we had peace was under the late president Levy Mwanawasa and former President Rupiah Banda who respected the Bemba tradition and norms. They did not interfere in the operations of the tradition, and their process. All those who claim to be aligned to the Bembas are the ones who have been persecuting us,” said Mr. Mucheleka.

He revealed that the scheme was about humiliating and finishing the Bemba kingdom, adding that the whole ideas  was about the PF wanting to ride on other tribes.

“They want to ride on us, when it suits them they are bembas especially when they are looking for political office, they claim to be bemda and the time we support them and give the power they come after us. Look the first victims under Kaunda were Bembas and Kapwepwe was forced to resign because of the persecution of the Bembas,” he said.

He retaliated that the PF must know that bembas were above blackmail because they understood their political and civil rights which help them to be part of the electoral process of the country.

“No amount of blackmail and threats will work against us. They must know that I am a member of the Bemba Royal Family and that this PF government is persecuting all those members of the Bemba family who have stood in solidarity with our traditional authority and under this trying moments. I have to warn them that we have no intention whatsoever to sell our soul for three pieces of sylva,” he said.

He said that he was also aware about some bembas who were being used to betray the traditional set up, “but I am not one of them, GBM is not one of them. This is why GBM is being persecuted and that is why they have now targeted me for harassment. I am telling you that we are seeing what is happening and for those that are being used from Luwingu, they will soon meet the people.”