Bembas warn Patriotic Front


Supporters of the Patriotic Front (PF) await the arrival of Presidential candidate Edgar Lungu at a rally in Lusaka, January 19, 2015. Zambians go to the polls on January 20, 2015, following the death of President Michael Sata in October 2014. REUTERS/Rogan Ward (ZAMBIA - Tags: ELECTIONS POLITICS)

Supporters of the Patriotic Front (PF) await the arrival of Presidential candidate Edgar Lungu at a rally in Lusaka, January 19, 2015. Zambians go to the polls on January 20, 2015, following the death of President Michael Sata in October 2014. REUTERS/Rogan Ward (ZAMBIA – Tags: ELECTIONS POLITICS)

PRESIDENT Edgar Lungu should not forget that the PF members whom he is dragging through the mud using his press aide, Amos Chanda, made him who he is today, says member of the Bemba Royal Establishment Alex Bwalya Kanyelele.

And sources have disclosed that the Chitimukulu recently held a meeting with President Lungu where the traditional leader advised the Head of State to appoint a more vibrant minister of finance because Alexander Chikwanda had failed to run the economy.

In a press statement, Kanyelele stated that claims by Chanda that a group of emissaries representing Miles Sampa had approached President Lungu demanding that the Head of State appoints the Matero member of parliament into Cabinet to balance the Bemba representation in government were malicious.

“If you hear the Bemba Royal Establishment talking, you have to understand that things are bad. When things are normal, you won’t find the Bembas or the Bemba Royal Establishment talking. As Bembas and the royal establishment, we respect the President. Where we are not clear is how Amos Chanda finds himself saying there are people that are going to State House who are asking the President to replace honourable Alexander Chikwanda and honourable Kambwili with someone like Miles Sampa,” Kanyelele said.

“How can a right-thinking human being claim that when you drop one Bemba from government and replace them with another from the same ethnic group, you would have settled the issue of Bemba representation in government? Where is the logic in that or has Amos lost his mind? Amos should exercise common sense and not start a war with Bembas by way of dragging us into the little dirty politics he is learning now, otherwise, that will be counterproductive to President Lungu.”

He said many of the Bemba people in PF who helped President Lungu ascend to the presidency had been turned into targets of humiliation by the Lungu administration.

“We know Bembas, especially those who worked closely with the late President Sata, are now targets of humiliation and victimisation by the Lungu administration. So, let him tell us who came to State House to lobby the President to replace Kambwili with Sampa. Today, Mr Chanda should know that it is difficult for us to go to State House. We have no chance to see the President, including those that risked their lives to make sure that we have President Lungu in government,” said Kanyelele.

“There are many people who worked very hard to make Edgar Chagwa Lungu win this election. Today, if you go there, you cannot have access to State House. There is no time for us. It is very sad. We tried to bring in a real government to work with the people and not the way they are doing. Amos blocks so many well-meaning individuals from meeting the President. So how did those emissaries find their way into State House?”

And sources said the Chitimukulu feels offended by the statement from State House.

“The statement from State House has really offended His Royal Highness, the Mwine Lubemba because this is a malicious attack meant to ridicule and humiliate him. But the truth of what happened is that His Royal Highness went to see the President way before Honourable Miles Sampa resigned, and not many people were aware of this visit to State House. Moreover, the President was only with Freedom Sikazwe and Ronald Chitotela; Amos was not there,” sources said. “During that meeting, the Mwine Lubemba urged the President that, ‘Look, the economy is going down and the Minister of Finance is not explaining to the nation the plans that your government is putting in place to inspire hope in the citizens who are suffering. Why don’t you remove him and find a proactive minister to take over?’ But the President refused saying, ‘If I do that, the Bembas will rise against me’, that is when the Mwine Lubemba advised him to say, ‘If it’s the Bembas you are worried about, you have Miles Sampa who is young and energetic’, still more the President refused.”

The sources said the Chitimukulu also advised the President to talk to Kambwili because his threats on citizens and investors were giving a bad impression of the government.

“What shocked His Royal Highness is that the meeting was private, but the next thing he heard was Amos Chanda saying Honourable Miles Sampa sent emissaries to State House to lobby for a promotion, which is a lie. This has really angered the Mwine Lubemba because it means it’s the President himself who told Amos to say what he said because he (Chanda) was not there in that meeting,” said the sources.

When contacted, Chanda said State House regarded Sampa’s emissaries as high-standing members of society and would not name them.

“The integrity of some of those emissaries is impeccable, we would not have said so if there was nothing like that. However, for purposes of not embarrassing these people, we have chosen not to mention their names; moreover he (Sampa) has left government,” said Chanda.

“I was very clear that this did not come from Miles, but the emissaries were very clear and said they had come from him…Actually the standing of these emissaries in society is so high, you will be shocked if I mentioned their names. It would shock even your boss. But I can tell you the number, they were five.”


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