PF using details of sim registration to campaign, distributing cash

The PF is using details of people who registered their numbers with mobile service providers to campaign in Livingstone and Mpongwe.

Every few minutes, residents of Livingstone and Mpongwe are bombwaded with message on their mobile phones to vote for PF candidates. Those in Livingstone are receiving the following unsolicited message;

‘Did you know that your vote for PF candidate Lawrence Evans on the 28th February 2013 by election is the only key to develop Livingstone central? thank you’

But this has annoyed residents.

Said one irritated resident:

‘I’m disappointed with ZICTA. I thought when we were told to register our sim cards our information would be safe guarded and be confidential. Now I am continually receiving SMSs from PF asking me to vote for Lawrence Evans in next week L/stone bye election. How does PF know my number and who gave them the permission to start sending me SMSs every 10 minutes? What guarantee do I have that the information ZICTA has about me is secure? Is this the reason why they were forcing to register us sim cards so that they could use our contacts to send us SMSs enticing us to vote for them?’

Another disappointed citizen told the Watchdog:

‘Now my worry is not the content of the message but how did PF get my phone number and what if i belong to another group. AIRTEL where is the confidentiality. Mesages are flying all over Livingstone since morning. Airtel should comment over this’.

Meanwhile,  the MMD and UPND in Livingstone have intensified their campaigns ahead of next week’s by election while the PF has also intensified on distributing mealie meal and cash handouts to the electorates.
According to reports received from the two opposition political parties participating in the by election, the PF has been distributing mealie meal and cash handouts to the electorate especially in densely populated areas like Libuyu, Zambezi ward and Simonga.
The reports have also indicated that the PF are using the disgruntled former MMD officials to distribute the mealie meal and cash handouts.
A source within the PF said that his party is using former Kazungula and Itezh-tezh district commissioner Mary Mukwiza, former provincial minister and self confessed Satanist Lukulo Katombola and former southern province permanent secretary Gladys Kristafor.
Others are former Choma DC Laiven Apuleni, Mr. I Banda and other MMD members like former MMD provincial youth chairman Bbalewa Mungala to carry out the exercise.
The PF is also believed to set up camps in all the 17 wards in Livingstone where the mealie meal is being kept before it is distributed.
The source further disclosed that the distribution exercise usually takes place during the night between 21 hours and midnight.
The recent incidence was over the weekend where Mukwiza accompanied by PF members attempted to hoodwink a former MMD member who lives in Libuyu to join the PF but her efforts did not yield any results.
Ms. Mukwiza later gave the MMD member who refused to join or vote for the PF a Kr 100 as an inducement.
On Tuesday, PF issued a statement to accusing the UPND of planning to distribute mealie meal, money and cooking oil to the electorates few days before the polls.
The PF claimed that it was aware of the UPND’s plans.
But both MMD and UPND officials have rubbished and described the statement by the PF as bogus.
A UPND official said that his party is not interested in engaging itself in petty politics like the PF.
He said that UPND is aware that PF has lost the grip and now members are running around like headless chickens.

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