PF Secretary General Winter Kabimba and his backers yesterday felt used and frustrated by President Micheal Sata after two of his motions in the Central Committee were both rejected despite what they thought was a strong backing from the President.
Sources close to Mr. Kabimba, who is currently in Ethiopia for the AU summit, said the PF strongman was surprised and angered that the two motions of expelling Foreign Affairs Minister Given Lubinda and that of adopting documented crook Clement Muhamed Andeleki which he (LKabimba) was tasked by Mr Sata to champion both failed to go through.
On the motion to rubber-stamp the PF disciplinary committee decision to expel Lubinda, Kabimba was surprised that the president seemed powerless to guide the way forward and bulldoze people to have Mr. Lubinda expelled because the majority of the members felt supporting Kabimba’s engineered resolution would spell doom for the party.
Sources that attended the meeting said president Sata also referred to intelligence reports that suggest that Mr. Lubinda was too strong to unseat in Lusaka’s Kabwata constituency if expelled.
Intelligence reports that were commissioned by Mr. Sata indicated that urban dwellers and Lusaka residents in particular are so frustrated with PF failed election promises and were waiting for any opportunity to punish the party by voting for the opposition, and Mr. Lubinda in particular.
“Mr. Lubinda and intelligence reports gathered in Lusaka and Kabwata proved too strong for the party to mess with him as he was going to easily embarrass the party by winning the seat.
What is even more frustrating to Kabimba and his backers is Lubinda’s determination not to succumb to calls for him to resign but wait for an expulsion, a situation that would even earn him more sympathy in the country”, PF insiders said.
Sources said the failure by Mr. Sata to bulldoze the meeting to expel Lubinda as was agreed between him, Kabimba and his backers shocked them and made Kabimba feel used by Sata.
Sources said it is possible that from now, Mr. Kabimba and his backers at the Post newspaper are likely to tone down as they very frustrated and embarrassed and no longer trust the old man (Sata).
They said Kabimba was so sure Lubinda would be expelled because prior to the meeting, some of Lubinda’s vocal supporters in the party were called to State House by Mr. Sata to listen to voice-recordings of Mr. Lubinda allegedly denouncing the party policies and government direction.
The Watchdog recently reported that Mr. Lubinda’s phone was heavily tapped and in some recordings, he is heard telling some foreign dignitaries, diplomats and prominent citizens condemning some of the PF government policies that were against the ideals of the campaign promises.
Mr. Lubinda is also heard promising to fight hard and try to reverse some ridiculous policies and decisions being made by his government because he felt embarrassed to be associated with them.
It is these phone recordings that were later presented to the president and Mr. Kabimba that are at the verge of costing him his job and earn him expulsion.
Sources said yesterday’s PF Central Committee meeting deferred the decision on Lubinda because they wanted to do more in swaying foreign and Zambia public opinion against him which he currently enjoys, before he can possibly be expelled.
On adoption of Andeleki as PF Livingstone candidate, Kabimba’s exaggerated importance in the party was again thwarted when people refused to endorse his candidate and the president never supported him to his disappointment.
Some senior PF members said they are slowly reclaiming their powers in the party and government from outsiders and chancers supported by the Post newspaper’s agenda.
Sources said they want to quickly reclaim back their party from strangers and outsiders who were scheming to bring stooges in PF who will rubber-stamp Kabimba’s presidential ambitions that are being backed by the Post newspaper.