People’s Party President Mike Mulongoti openly accused Justice Minister Wynter Kabimba of laying a foundation to succeed President Michael Sata.
During a rare National Watch television programme on ZNBC last evening, Mr. Mulongoti said Mr. Kabimba who is also PF Secretary General has been blocking potential successors to President Sata in order to smoothen his way to the top.
“Everybody knows Wynter is a pretender. He is preparing to take over, I know he will deny it but that is what the people in the party are telling us,” Mr. Mulongoti said.
“He is busy kicking out any potential threats to his presidential ambition so that he positions himself to take over, everybody knows that,” he said.
This was after Mr. Kabimba described Mr. Mulongoti and others who campaigned for the PF in the run up to the 2011 elections as political refugees who had sought solace in the PF.
“Our view as the PF is that Mr. Mulongoti and all those that came and sympathized with us were never our members, we view them as political refugees who had run away from a civil war in their own parties and we accommodated them. If refugees at Maheba sympathize with Zambians, they don’t become Zambians. That was the similar situation that Mike (Mr. Mulongoti) and others found themselves in,” Mr. Kabimba said.
The accusations from Mr. Mulongoti will go far to reinforce a general perception that Mr. Kabimba has been orchestrating the recent power battles in the PF to position himself for the big post in the likely event that President Sata does not rerun for office.
“My friend here (pointing at Mr. Kabimba) is a beneficiary of politics of patronage. He has never won an elective political office. He is where he is today because he was appointed Secretary General and nominated as MP by President Sata. He has idea of what it takes to form a political party,” Mulongoti said.
He continued, “My presidential ambitions are well within my right. I have the rights to dream big also. I want to be President. I was a Councilor, MP and Ministers, is it wrong to progress in life?”
Mr. Mulongoti defended his decision to form his own political party saying it was a better option.
“I couldn’t go to the MMD because of the manner in which I was expelled and I couldn’t go and officially join the PF because it has its own problems, not all is well in the PF. I didn’t want to join a house which is on fire.”