Convicted former UPND MP for Chilanga Constituency is set to be acquitted under a PF brokered secret deal, on condition that he renounces his membership with the UPND and denounces it’s leader Hakainde Hichilema.
Mukata has since appealed his murder conviction to the Court of Appeal and it is expected that the hearing will be fast tracked to enable him aid the PF in their campaigns in the Chilanga by election.
Prisons authorities transferred Mukata to Mukobeko maximum prison but the prison vehicle was recalled back to Lusaka after Home Affairs Minister Stephen Kampyongo ordered the Prisons’ Commissioner General Percy Chato that Mukata be driven back to Lusaka Central Prisons where he is currently detained awaiting the Court of appeal decision .
The quid pro quo arrangement is that Mukata backs a new candidate a Mrs Banda who was once the party’s District Chairperson before defecting to the UPND. Upon President Lungu becoming President, Mrs Banda left UPND and rejoined the PF.
The PF are not leaving any stone unturned in their attempt to win Chilanga as they want to showcase the constituency as a test case and proof of their relevance to still be in Government while paint the UPND as a diminishing party. The PF also want to increase their numbers in parliament after the shifting of loyalties of former Ministers Chishimba Kambwili and Harry Kalaba who vote with the opposition in the National Assembly.
Many observers view this move as the reason why Speaker Matibini declared Chilanga Constituency vacant even though there was a pending appeal. Speaker Matibini set aside the precedent he applied over two losing MPs where the High Court nullified their parliamentary seats without the Head of the Legislature declaring their seats vacant. This is viewed as evidence of the fast track process of Mukuta’s impending acquital being already in progress.
Meanwhile Mukata is playing double standards in prison as he is ‘talking’ and seeing both the PF and the UPND with a view to mislead the latter.