Strong opposition alliance vital-Mulongoti

THE outcome of the Mangango parliamentary by-election has vindicated people calling for the opposition to work together, People’s Party president Mike Mulongoti has said.

Mr. Mulongoti who is in an alliance with the MMD said all genuine opposition political parties should deeply reflect on the need for unity ahead of the 2016 general election in order to offer Zambians a formidale and credible working team to liberate Zambia from the shackles of poverty.

He said if the opposition political party leaders and their members continued being egoistic and working in isolation, they would continue losing elections just as they have lost the Mangango seat to the Patriotic Front (PF).

He said results from the Mangango by-elections where the PF candidate Lingweshi Lyambai won was a true reflection of the need for the opposition to work together in all the by-elections now.

“We do hope that our colleagues in the opposition will take the lose seriously now and reflect deeply and work towards the formation of a strong opposition alliance. We have always told them that there is need to work together. For those who are egoistic, I am sure they can see what the results are and they are able to see now that if they worked with others and fielded one candidate, the opposition would have beaten the PF.

“The opposition split the vote. Add what MMD got, UPND, ADD, 4R, UNIP and others, PF lost but because of spliting the vote in that election, we allowed the PF to get it on a silver platter. And this is what we need to reflect on deeply,” said Mr. Mulongoti.

And MMD president Dr. Nevers Mumba has also suppoprted the need for the opposition to work together.

Responding to Daily Nation’s query over any chances by the opposition of working together, Dr. Mumba said his party had an open policy of working together with genuine members.

“It’s true that there is need for the opposition to have a strong voice by way of working together and that is what we promote in the MMD. However, this will depend on our colleagues,” said Dr. Mumba.

And the UPND says the Patriotic Front used violence to win the Mangango by-elections.

UPND vice president for administration Richard Kapita has said the events prior to the elections in Mangango were similar to what happened in Livingstone where the PF claimed victory after intimidating people.

He said PF’s victory in Mangango did not reflect the wishes of the people adding that violence, vote buying and intimidation would be the legacy of the PF candidate Rodgers Lingweshi. “We did not find the environment conducive for the election and the PF made the place volatile knowing that they cannot win a clean election. They had to use the tactic they used in Livingstone of arresting our campaign team. You are aware that Katuba MP Jonas Shakafuswa was arrested on flimsy matters of assault; our president was put on a wanted list.

This is a tactic the PF has adopted to win elections,” said Mr. Kapita. He said the UPND was also disappointed with the way police conducted itself during the election period, adding it was time Zambians should reflected deeply on the way forward.