Wednesday, June 12, 2013

PF officials are scheming against me, says Chishiba
By Allan Mulenga and Kombe Chimpinde
Tue 04 June 2013, 14:00 CAT

FORMER Kafulafuta MMD member of parliament James Chishiba has accused some PF officials of scheming to block his application to re-contest the Kafulafuta seat on the PF ticket. In an interview on Sunday, Chishiba said the PF officials were peddling lies against him.

"If there are any acts of corruption in this country, the Anti - Corruption Commission have capable tools to investigate. This is coming up because of by-election, which is very unfair. There are people who are peddling allegations of against me," he said.

Chishiba claimed that among the people vying for the seat under the PF ticket, he was the only candidate popular at the grassroots.

"There are some individuals who are saying that I have been imposed on the people of Kafulafuta. But I am the one who won the elections in Kafulafuta, in all the seven wards; that was actually landslide victory. Out of the 29 polling stations I scored highest in 26 polling stations," he said.

Chishiba claimed that his defection from the MMD to the PF was endorsed by the people in Kafulafuta.

"And my defection has been caused by the people of Kafulafuta and not myself. The people of Kafulafuta want to work with the government," he said.

Chishiba has since vowed to go ahead with his application to re-contest the seat.

"Someone went round and twisted the whole story about my defection to the PF. For me, I am going ahead to file in my application tomorrow. But I have heard that there already three applicants who have already done that, including the one who is blowing up these issues of corruption. No one should stop others from applying for adoption and I will be picked on merit," he said.

On the accusation that he had been imposed on the people of Kafulafuta by PF secretary general Wynter Kabimba, Chishiba responded: "It is very unfair for some people to say that I have been imposed on the people of Kafulafuta because that is my stronghold. No one can dispute that. I can't answer for the PF secretary general Wynter Kabimba on the issue to do with adoption. Mr Kabimba has put it very clearly why the PF is adopting people who have defected from MMD to contest by-elections on the PF ticket.

And PF Chipata Central Constituency chairman John Mkhazika has differed with former PF Eastern Province chairperson Lucas Phiri over the adoption of candidates in the forth coming by-elections.

Reacting to the assertions by Phiri, who is currently serving a suspension slapped on him by the central committee of the PF, that Lameck Mangani was better placed for adoption in the forthcoming by-elections on the PF ticket because he knew the area well, Mkhazika said Mangani was not among the three popular candidates for the grassroots.

Phiri recently said that Mangani was best suited to be a leader of a cosmopolitan area like Chipata Central.

But Mkhazika said as far as the constituency executive was concerned, Mangani was not among the top three candidates in the constituency, namely Hanif Badat, Moses Mawere and Pilila Jere.

"Firstly, (Mr Lucas) Phiri has been suspended from the party, so we don't know the capacity in which he is speaking. Secondly, it is not true that Mangani is the best suited candidate for this adoption, no! Lucas is just saying that because he is Mangani's 'boy'. Even those wrangles which existed sometime back, it is Phiri who orchestrated them," he said.

"Right now, I can tell you that popular candidates among those that have applied are Badat, Jere and Mawere because they are on the ground. If you meet people here and ask them, it is those names that will be mentioned. Mangani also has his own people although most of them are only loyal to him and not the party."

Mkhazika said the constituency would on Friday conduct interviews for the candidates that had applied and later vote for their preferred candidate through a primary election.

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