…we were forced to petition, say 2 East UPND defectors

‘‘WE LOST the elections but we were forced to petition all parliamentary elections by the UPND top leadership; but we have realised this doesn’t make sense, hence our decision to withdraw the petitions and defect to the PF,’’ losing Chadiza and Luangeni UPND parliamentary candidates Moses Moyo and Samson Thole have said respectively .

And PF chairperson for elections Jean Kapata said the defection of the duo to the PF was the beginning of the end for the UPND as PF was scheduled to receive 11 members of the National Management Committee (NMC) from UPND soon.

And Kabwata Member of Parliament Given Lubinda has charged that the UPND was ‘‘drifting into an abyss of political oblivion’’ because it had failed to inspire Zambians as it had diverted from the principles it adopted at its inception in 1998.

Speaking soon after his defection from the UPND at the PF secretariat in Lusaka yesterday, Luangeni parliamentary aspirant in the just-ended election Moses Moyo said the UPND was not sincere in directing all its losing candidates to petition the election results because the poll results reflected the will of the people.

Mr. Moyo said Zambia needed a focused leader who would unite all the people and foster unity especially


now that the country has been divided by regional voting and post-election violence which had characterised some parts of the country, adding that only President Edgar Lungu had exhibited the political acumen needed to drive the country forward.

He said President Lungu needed support in his quest to develop the country and that his desire to develop Zambia had been demonstrated by his non-segregative approach in rolling out developmental projects across the country. “We lost the elections. The reason why we petitioned these elections is because were forced to by UPND’s top hierarchy but I have decided to withdraw the petition and resign from the UPND because I know that Charles Zulu won the elections.

‘‘People wanted him to be their MP and I congratulated him and conceded defeat because I realised I could still work with him by telling him what people want even when I lost.

“Zambia now needs a focused leader not individuals who are driven by selfish motives to lead us and President Lungu has demonstrated his desire to develop the country by rolling out developmental projects across the country, including in regions which have not been voting for him and he needs our support.

‘‘We have come to PF today and we hope we will be of use. All we can ask the (PF) grassroots is that they should accommodate us,” Mr. Moyo said.

His Chadiza counterpart Samson Thole said his decision to join PF did not border on tribal lines because Eastern Province had always voted on merit as opposed to other regions and vowed to de-campaign the UPND by breaking down all its structures in the province.

And Ms. Kapata said in addition to the departure of former UPND deputy spokesperson Edwin Lifwekelo, the PF will soon be receiving 11 UPND members of the NMC while another tsunami awaited them on the Copperbelt because all the party structures in the province had decided to join the “winning team”.

“Just like I said when we received my brother Lifwekelo, we are yet to receive more defectors from UPND. We have 11 members of the NMC who will be joining soon while on the Copperbelt all their structures are coming to PF,” Ms. Kapata said.

Mr Lubinda charged that the UPND was slowly drifting into political oblivion because the principles on which it was founded had been buried together with its founder member Anderson Mazoka.

He said it had now become clear that Mr. Mazoka’s “disciples” had been certified un-teachable because they could not hold on to what the party stood for, rendering it a shadow of its former self.

“It is sad that the UPND, the party that I assisted to form in 1998, has diverted from its principles. I feel sad that the principles that it stood for when the party was formed were buried with Mr. Mazoka in 2006. It is just a shadow of itself,” Mr. Lubinda said.