President Michael Sata is slowly side-lining his Special Assistant for Press and Public Relations George Chellarhfor leaking and selling information to undesirable elements and for his childish behaviour.
Sources at State House have disclosed to the Watchdog that young George Chellah was fond of leaking and at times literally selling sensitive information for cash to outsiders such as Fred Mmembe and his clique of Wynter Kabimba and Mutembo Nchito.
Insiders say each time some personal friends and allies that are perceived to be enemies to the Mmembe clique went to see the president, Chellah would immediately alert the Mmembe group about their presence at State House.
“Can you imagine there are some people the president has known and worked with for a long time under the Frederick Chiluba administration who are still enemies to Mr. Mmembe and group. And each time these people come to give advice to the president, young Chellar would immediately tip his former boss at the Post newspaper Fred Mmembe and sometimes disclose the contents of the discussion,” sources said.
Impeccable PF insiders said there are people the president will never forget and forsake no matter what and he wants to work with them, but these are still enemies to the likes of Fred Mmembe and Mutembo Nchito.
“Do you think Mr. Sata can forget people like former intelligence chief Xavier Chungu who he even wanted to promote as Permanent Secretary for Luapula province? Mr. Chungu and Sata did a lot of things together under the Chiluba administration but these are sworn-enemies of the Mmembe group that persecuted them under the Levy Mwanawasa administration’s plunder cases,” sources said.
Sources said that even when Mr. Sata was arrested by Mr. Mwanawasa for motor vehicle theft, it was Mr. Chungu who bailed him out in court when he (Chungu) testified that Sata was given the vehicle by the Zambia Intelligence Services because he was a friend of the system.
“But what the young man Chellah was doing is that when some of these people that were tormented by Fred Mmembe and Mutembo Nchito under Mwanawasa wanted to see the president, he (Chellar) has been disclosing to the Mmembe camp and sometimes leaking and selling confidential discussions that they hold,” sources said.
Insiders say the president has also discovered that the young man is too corrupt as he charges people especially Businessmen of Asian origin as much as US$5000 just to meet the president.
Besides, Chellah is said to be hanging around in all sorts of places with wrong company, small girls and sometimes discussing sensitive information when he gets drunk.
As a result, of late, he has been told to slowly reduce issuing too many statements in the name of the president perhaps as a way of getting him out and probably send him in foreign service.
“Have you heard anything from him in the last one month or so? In fact the president even ordered that he doesn’t travel with him for the recent China trip and was also missing in the recent by-election trips in both Kapiri Mposhi and Western province in Lukulu West,” sources disclosed.
Sources said the president is now considering bringing back Zambia’s press secretary to the United Kingdom, Amos Chanda, to take up that role as he is considered mature enough.
Mr. Chanda, sources say, was hounded out by the same George Chellah with the help of Emmanuel Mwamba after he ‘poisoned’ him to the president last year.
“Unless the president changes his mind after your revelation, like he has done with some things, the boy maybe on his way out or if he remains at State House, he will basically be getting a free salary but not do anymore sensitive assignments for the president. They might possibly be sending him in and out of the town for one or two assignments just to keep him outside State House,” sources said.
Insiders say Chellah may still issue one or two statements, but mainly lacking substance in nature as he hangs around waiting for a suitable mature replacement.
But Sata could also be afraid of mishandling Chellah as he has personal information on him.