THE Rainbow Party has gained a lot of popularity in a newspaper but has failed to test its popularity by participating in any of the many by-elections because its leader Wynter Kabimba is aware that he is unable to win any political contest, the United Party for National Development (UPND) has observed.
UPND deputy general secretary has said while the Rainbow was hitting headlines in newspapers, its leader had remained inconspicuous and had failed to test its popularity by taking part in the by-elections.
And UPND has claimed that it is the only political party that had registered exponential growth and acceptance across the country and was ready to take over the governance of the country in 2016.
Mr Simusamba said Mr Kabimba’s Rainbow Party was only popular in a particular newspaper but the party did not have councillors, a member of Parliament (MP) and that its leader had become politically inconspicuous following his departure from the ruling Patriotic Front (PF).
Mr Simusamba said Mr Kabimba had failed to test the popularity of his party by participating in the many by-elections because he was aware that the reality on the ground was different from the political panorama he was enjoying in some newspapers.
He said if the Rainbow Party was certain with its popularity, the party should attempt to field a candidate in the coming parliamentary by-elections because its prominence in some newspapers was not going to reflect the real growth on the ground.
“They (Rainbow Party) are said to be the new kids on the block but we have not seen them anywhere apart from newspapers. The Rainbow is only growing in newspapers and we have not tested their popularity because they have not participated in any election to be rated. There is a possibility that their popularity is being manufactured but politics is not about making noise in newspapers. So far they have zero councillors, zero MPs and their president is inconspicuous,” Mr Simusamba said.
And Mr Simusamba said the UPND had penetrated into areas and regions where the ruling party had been claiming dominance and that the 2016 general elections would not be easy for PF unless it changed its leadership style of taking Zambians for granted.
Mr Simusamba said the ruling party had appointed UPND members as District Commissioners in Western Province with the hope of using them to campaign for the PF in next year’s general elections.
He said Zambians were disappointed with President Edgar Lungu’s first 100 days in State House because the cost of living for ordinary citizens had remained high as the prices of basic needs had remained astronomically high.
Mr Simusamba said the Kwacha had continued to fluctuate under President Lungu’s leadership and that there was need for the Head of State to address the nation on the economic status of the country.
Mr Simusamba has also advised that President Lungu should move away from the culture of talking to Zambians through swearing-in ceremonies but should consider calling for a press conference where he could openly interact with the media.
“The UPND is the only party that has grown exponentially and the party has penetrated areas which were once dominated by the ruling party. The UPND has penetrated other regions where it was difficult to exist and the PF will be shocked in 2016 because they will be knocked out of Government. We have analysed figures and what is true is that we have gained heavily in popularity. In Senga Hill where we only managed 1000 votes in the January presidential election, we have managed to penetrate and scored more than 4000 votes during the parliamentary by-elections,” Mr Simusamba said.
He has also warned the PF to avoid using district commissioners in their campaigns cautioning that the UPND was going to effect citizens’ arrest on civil servants who would be found engaging in politics.
He alleged that PF secretary general Davis Chama had ordered district commissioners to use public resources to campaign for the ruling party candidates in the coming parliamentary by-elections but that the UPND was not going to bystanders and watch public resources getting abused.