With the ‘A team’ of Wynter Kabimba, Guy Scott and others completely dismantled, Edgar Lungu seems to be seeing a chance for himself as successor to ailing president Michael Sata.
Lungu is PF secretary-general, Justice minister, Defence minister and PF chairman for discipline, among other positions.
He is playing his game very cautiously but effectively. Just the past weekend, he said there are no cartels in PF. He said no one belongs to the Kabimba group and there is no member who belongs to the Geoffrey Mwamba (GBM) group. All members, he said, belong to Michael Sata. But we all know that Sata is sick and Lungu is currently the most favoured person by Sata, going by the number of positions he has been given. So Lungu is actually saying no one belongs to Kabimba or GBM but to me and Sata. If something has to happen to Sata today, Lungu is the most well placed person to take over, especially that ceremonial vice-president Guy Scott belongs to the disgraced A team and his qualification to be president questionable.
If people like GBM thought Lungu will deliver the presidency to them, they have some more thinking to do.
And whoever is advising Lungu is doing a good job. Look at the way he handled the people suspended by Kabimba. Lungu says he has lifted all suspensions of PF members so that they can actively participate in affairs of the ruling party. But, and that is the catch, they will not get party positions.
Lungu said those who once held leadership positions would not retain them because there are no vacancies
“We didn’t want chaos. So when we lifted all the suspensions we simply reinstated them as ordinary members so that they can actively participate in party affairs,’ he said.
What this means is that everyone will work for Lungu; no one will compete with him.
And to people like GBM, Kambwili, Kabimba and other with presidential ambitions, Lungu gave a veiled warning.
He said it is unfortunate that some people hold the belief that they are anointed to take over the presidency because they are close to President Sata.
“It is not automatic that when one is close to the Head of State, then they will take over. No! Many times President Sata draws us close to him so that we can learn from him,” Mr Lungu said.
He also said there are no factions in PF because members are loyal to President Sata.
He said it is an undisputable fact that PF is centred on President Sata, who worked hard to build the party from nothing to where it is today.
“PF was built around President Sata. We shall watch him, listen and learn from him. I will personally learn from him as much as I can,” he said
What Lungu is saying here is that whomever Sata anoints will be the one to succeed him and so far Lungu is the most favoured.
Cleverly, and to make the gullible believe that he is not power hungry and therefore humble, Lungu says he does not envy to be president.
“Remember President Sata once made me act in his position. It is not something I look forward to. There is so much work.
Yet he accepts to have four positions at one time?
Obviously Lungu is right to campaign for himself. Who wouldn’t? Besides he is more sensible than most PF goons, except that brown bottle issue.