THE Patriotic Front has accused the United Party for National Development (UPND) of having paid some of the University of Zambia (UNZA) students huge sums of money to cause unrest and consternation at the country’s highest learning institution.
PF Lusaka Province youth chairman Kennedy Mr Kamba alleged that the riot that rocked the university on Wednesday was sponsored by the UPND leadership stating that the ruling party had the evidence that the opposition political party was behind the confusion.
But the UPND has denied the allegations stating that the opposition party had absolutely nothing to do with the riot by the UNZA students and has demanded that the police should summon Mr Kamba to substantiate his claims.
And PF Lusaka district Information and Publicity Secretary Wellington Musonda said he is also aware that the UNZA riot was sponsored by the opposition political party.
Mr Musonda said the Zambia Police should investigate and bring to book UPND members who had a hand in the riots that broke out at UNZA.
But UPND presidential spokesperson Edward Mumbi said the UPND was in the opposition and could not be blamed for the social and economic frustrations the lecturers, students and the general citizenry were being subjected to.
Reacting to the riots by some students who were pressing for the release of results by the lecturers on Wednesday, Mr. Kamba said the UPND had been exposed as a party that believed in fanning violence to achieve cheap political mileage.
Mr Kamba has appealed to the police to thoroughly investigate this matter but Mr Mumbi said since the PF provincial chairman had evidence of his claims, it would be prudent for him to submit his statement to the police.
Mr Mumbi said the UPND was a decent political party that believed in the rule of law and could not be involved in sponsoring lawlessness in the country.
Mr Mumbi said the PF had economically injured a lot of Zambians including students and lecturers in universities and other tertiary institutions through its unfulfilled promises which the ruling party made during the 2011 general elections.
“Any decent Zambian would not associate the riots that have started especially in tertiary education to the UPND. The fact is the UPND is the strongest opposition political party and it is going through what the PF went through when it was clear that it was on its way to form government. Let it be on record that the UPND is absolutely not behind the riot at the university. Therefore the PF failed master plan should not be blamed on the UPND. The university lecturers are owed more than K400 million in allowances and this should not be apportioned to the UPND,” Mr Mumbi said.
He said the UPND was aware that the riot was as a result of the withholding of students’ results by the lecturers adding that some of the students’ whose results were being withheld were about to graduate but could not go out because they would not be cleared by way of being awarded by their degree certificates.
“Responding to Mr Kamba’s allegations suffice to say that read your days carefully. UPND takes great exception to be dragged into a matter that is purely for the party in government,” Mr Mumbi said.
And University of Zambia Students Union secretary general Clement Kaponda described Mr Kamba’s claims as unfounded.
“The tyres were not brought in campus by UPND, we have a lot of tyres at the campus, the protest had no external influence,” he said.
“Why are they accusing UPND of all the political parties why can’t they accuse NAREP, MMD or any other political party,” Mr Kaponda said.