PF candidate who is also defence Minister Edgar Lungu, Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe and former Zambia Intelligence Chief Xavier Chungu connived to send Zambian Service Chiefs this morning to ask former president Rupiah Banda to support Lungu’s candidature.
Highly placed sources say the Service Chiefs met Banda this morning at his house where they asked him to either not participate in this election in anyway or participate by backing Lungu, and deliver the Eastern province.
Lungu’s camp is so far in panic that a number of influential MMD MPs even those from the Eastern province have instead decided to back UPND’s Hakainde Hichilema.
“There has been phone discussions between Mugabe and Lungu with a view to convince Banda to back Lungu and promise him (Banda) to give back his retirement benefits which have so far been withdrawn by the PF government. They believe Banda should play a tribal politics in Eastern province by campaigning their own. As you know, Banda and Mugabe equally enjoyed some good relationship during their time as presidents,” the source said.
Some of the influential MMD MPs that are backing Hichilema are Kesenengwa’s Victoria Kalima, Sinda’s Levison Ngoma, Vincent Mwale, and Chipata Central MP Mtolo Phiri and others.
On their part, the service chiefs are scared with job loses should an opposition leader win elections, though they are not backed by majority of their junior officers who have decided to support the opposition.