UPND overrating itself – Kalaba


THE United Party for National Development (UPND) can continue imagining and fantasizing victory in the 2016 general elections but reality will hit them when the Patriotic Front (PF) and President Edgar Lungu will be declared winners, Bahati member of Parliament Harry Kalaba has predicted.

He said claims of popularity by the UPND were not new and that the opposition political party had always overrated itself but had never been any closer to winning any general election.

Mr Kalaba, who is Foreign Affairs Minister, recalled that the UPND under Mr Hakainde Hichilema had adopted an “egocentric, elitist and plutonic attitude” which had made the opposition political party fail to work with other political parties in the past.

He told the Daily Nation that Mr Hichilema should consider himself lucky that he would never win the country’s presidency and govern because the challenges the country was facing were too serious to be left to people with little knowledge of how a country is governed.

Mr Kalaba stated that the UPND and its leadership had always lacked sincerity and Zambians could never risk putting the country in the hands of a leadership that had no predictable political characteristics.

Mr Kalaba said the ruling party was going to work hard to defend its mandate to continue governing and that President Lungu had made the PF more popular and attractive by his humble and inclusive style of governing the country. He stated that the PF was not sleeping and was going to ensure that most of the election promises were delivered because Zambians deserved the best.

Mr Kalaba explained that Zambians were not amused that the UPND leadership had continued to disparage President Lungu and that they would ensure the opposition political party was not given a chance to preside over the affairs of the country.

“The UPND is going to lose the 2016 general elections because they have always lacked sincerity. The UPND and its leadership has failed to humble itself before the people and has adopted an egocentric, elitist and plutonic attitude and Zambians are not looking for such traits in leaders. President Lungu’s leadership is anchored on humbleness, respect for citizens and commitment to work harder and deliver and that is why the PF will be given another mandate to continue presiding over the affairs of the country. We can only wish them well in their dreams because the PF with retain power in 2016,” he said.

Mr Kalaba stated that the pact between the UPND and the PF collapsed because Mr Hichilema despite knowing that he was not as popular as Michael Sata in the opposition attempted to assume the leadership of the pact.

He said in 2006, the UPND frustrated the success of the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) when Mr Hichilema demanded that his political party should lead the alliance despite being new on the political scene.

Mr Kalaba said Mr Hichilema would never rule Zambia because he had always been disparaging the presidency.

“Mr Hichilema is very lucky that he is not going to be the president of this country because the challenges Zambia is facing are too serious. It is not possible to take what you are disparaging. During the Seventh Day Adventist (SDA) celebrations at Heroes Stadium, Mr Hichilema refused to recognize President Lungu when other opposition leaders were doing so,” Mr Kalaba said.