Dismissed Information Minister Chishimba Kambwili says Patriotic Front is his baby and has charged that some people like Jean Kapata are scared of the convention because they can’t win.
Kambwili who is the PF Roan Member of Parliament has vowed that he will not leave the PF because it is his baby. He says he is a member of Central Committee and a founder of the PF.
Kambwili is quoted of having said this in an article below published by the Mast Newspaper;
By Mwape Mbwelela and Lulumbi Nakazwe
CHISHIMBA Kambwili says the Patriotic Front is his baby and he believes in calling a spade, a spade and not a pick for the sake of creating an impression.
And Kambwili, the Roan PF member of parliament, says party chairperson for elections Jean Kapata is afraid of speaking out because “she has got so many skeletons in her cupboard”.
Kapata, the Mandevu PF member of parliament and lands minister, has accused Kambwili and recently fired party deputy chairperson for elections Kelvin Bwalya Fube of being rebels.
This was after Kambwili supported KBF’s call for elections from top to bottom in the ruling party, saying the method of handpicking leaders could no longer work.
Kambwili also suggested a change in the PF constitution to make all positions electable.
But Kapata moved and dismissed KBF for issuing the statement and later branded him and Kambwili as rebels while President Edgar Lungu said those calling for elections in the PF had presidential ambitions and were after his position.
However, KBF warned Kapata against calling him a rebel and demanded an immediate apology from her because he had done a lot for the party.
KBF, in response to President Lungu’s accusations, said there was nothing wrong with any member of the party having presidential ambitions.
And Kambwili, who was recently dismissed as information and broadcasting minister by President Lungu, said he believed in telling the truth on matters that were going wrong in the PF and that calling him a rebel was demeaning.
He said he could never be a rebel for merely pointing out wrongs in the party whose formation he was part of.
“I know and understand the PF constitution better that Jean Kapata because I was one of the people that crafted that constitution. So Jean cannot accuse me of destabilizing my own baby. I have said and I want to say it again, that PF is my baby and I cannot attack PF and cannot be a rebel in my own house,” Kambwili said.
“I feel so disappointed that a person like Jean Kapata can today come and call me a rebel. Jean Kapata joined PF when we had already formed it and if we were not welcoming people in the party, Jean Kapata would not have been a member of PF…And for Jean to accuse me that I don’t want new comers in the party is an insult of the worst kind. I have never been against new comers in the party because politics is about numbers but when you speak out against one wrong, that does not make you a rebel.”
He said he understood the PF constitution better because he was part of the people that crafted it.
“I know that all the elected officials in the party have got a mandate, the President has got a mandate for five years, he will be going for elections in 2020, the central committee has got a five year mandate and the lower organs have got one year, five months to go before their mandate expires,” Kambwili explained “All I agreed with KBF was the fact that all positions in the party must be elective, that we don’t want people to be appointed in positions and I was asking that we should change the constitution of the PF so that all positions, from the section up to the President must be elected by the general membership.”
He explained that he therefore did not understand why Kapata accused him of destabilizing the partyer.
“And if that means destabilizing the party, then I don’t know what politics Jean Kapata espouses. For me, I believe in calling a spade a spade and not a pick for the sake of impression and I will never say something for the sake on making an impression,” Kambwili said.
He accused Kapata harboring skeletons in her closet.
“Jean is saying all that for the sake of impression; I will forgive Jean because she has got so many skeletons in her cupboard so she has a lot to protect because she has got skeletons in her cupboard,” Kambwili charged.
“I want to warn jean that I am equal, she is a member of the central committee and I am also a member of the central committee and she cannot warn me. When she was saying, ‘I want to warn Kambwili’ and calling me a disgruntled politician…Who is a better politician between me and Jean? I will leave it to the Zambian people to judge who is a disgruntled politician between Jean and me. The people of Zambia are able to see so Jean must not take me for granted because I know she is speaking like that because today she is in government and she has got too many skeletons in her cupboard.”
He said Kapata must have respect for other members of the PF central committee.
“Jean is not the best person to warn me, she may be chairman of elections but I think I am more senior to her…I am a founder member, I was appointed member of the central committee earlier than her and she should have respect for other people,” Kambwili said.
He questioned who Kapata was in the ruling party and accused her of sowing division and that she against the idea of holding elections because she knew that she would not win.
“Who is Jean Kapata anyway? Who is Jean Kapata by the way in PF? It is such people like Jean Kapata, if there were elections, they can’t even win. They can only be in a position if they are appointed. If we go to the general conference and all positions are elective, she can’t win,” Kambwili said.
He further wondered if Kapata was a genuine member of the PF and called for unity in the party.
“We need unity in the party but its people like Jean Kapata who are bringing division in the party because you can’t own a party where if someone tells the truth, you want to say they are rebels, you want to fire them; that is not correct,” Kambwili charged.
“People have got divergent views and people have got to accept other people’s views. This party needs unity; I want to plead with genuine members of the party that we should be united. I doubt if Jean is a genuine member of the party. We need unity in this party, witchhunting must come to an end.”
He also said he has never had any meetings with KBF as alleged by Kapata.
“First and foremost, I have never had any meetings with KBF. And as a matter of fact, I don’t even have KBF’s number,” Kambwili said.
“People can go to MTN and check the calls to KBF, they will not find anything. I just know KBF as a brother in the party. We are not close of allies. For me, all I supported was just that issue of having positions elective from the sections to the president. I was not advocating for any elections because I know people have got the mandate. I can never ever attack my own party. I can never do anything that can put the party into disrepute. I love this party. All my life, I have said, ‘loyalty defines a man’. I am loyal to President Edgar Lungu. Even at my lowest ebb like this, I still remain loyal to him because he is the President of the country and the party. He is the President and there is nothing anybody can do about it and he deserves to be respected.”