Monday, February 08, 2010

Chiluba has right to support whoever he wants’

Chiluba has right to support whoever he wants’
By Ernest Chanda
Mon 08 Feb. 2010, 04:01 CAT

LUAPULA member of parliament Peter Machungwa has charged that those complaining about Frederick Chiluba’s campaigns against the PF-UPND Pact are just scared of losing next year’s election.

Addressing the media after Supreme Court judge Dennis Chirwa quashed the Lusaka High Court decision that granted the Patriotic Front (PF) an injunction restraining its Matero member of parliament Faustina Sinyangwe from performing her duties, Machungwa, who was in a joyous mood, said Chiluba had every right to support whoever he wanted.

In apparent reference to the PF, Machungwa said some people who Chiluba supported in 2006 were now crying the loudest because they were scared of losing the election since Chiluba’s support had shifted from them.

“Now let me also mention the debate that has been going on in the papers that Dr Chiluba cannot talk about this because he’s retired. But, you see, the law in this country does not mean that a retired president loses his right to express his opinion on a political issue or in fact to support a given candidate; he has all the right,” Machungwa said on Thursday. “What retirement means is he cannot himself stand for political office like he wants to become president or vice-president or chairman of a party, that’s what that means. So it doesn’t mean that he cannot support anybody. Like he himself pointed out, in 2006 he came out and fully supported Mr Sata for the presidential election. And nobody was crying about it. But I think now others are crying because they are scared of the loss that they will suffer as a result of him supporting somebody else. Like anybody else he has a right to express his opinion.”

When asked if those rights allowed Chiluba to actively campaign for his prefered candidate in the manner he had been campaigning for President Banda on the Copperbelt, Machungwa defended the action.

“If people ask him for his opinion, president Chiluba went to attend to personal matters. And it is obvious as former head of state he meets a lot of people and he’s free to say yes I support this person or I cannot support this person. He is in his right to express his opinion, and you see like me when we debate it is my right to say I think we should not pass this law because it is wrong,” said Machungwa. “And he hasn’t lost his right to do that. So those who still are crying very loudly because they’re going to lose, yes they must know that he will not support them, but there are others who may support them, that’s what it is. What right he has lost is that he cannot stand for political office. If he tries to do that we ourselves will say no Mr former president you are wrong.”

Labels: , ,


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home