The ruling PF leadership on the Copperbelt has been accused of attempting to shield its Ndola District Youth Secretary Oscar Himanga who was arrested for smuggling from being suspended by the Ndola City Council.
A full Council Meeting is on Monday expected to table a motion to suspend Mr Himanga who is also PF Kamba Ward Councilor from the Council after he was arrested for smuggling.
Mr Himanga who was arrested last week when he attempted to smuggle 70×25 Kilograms bags of mealie meal to the Congo DR has already been suspended by the PF Ndola District Executive and given seven days to exculpate himself.
Police Commissioner Charity Katanga confirmed the arrest of Mr Himanga and disclosed that he is due to appear in court soon.
But some party insiders have revealed that PF Provincial Chairman Nathan Chanda has dispatched a team of four Councilors to Lusaka to lobby Local Government Permanent Secretary Amos Malupenga to shield Mr Himanga from suspension by the Ndola City Council.
The team sent by Mr Chanda is due to meet Mr Malupenga early on Monday with the hope that the Permanent Secretary will instruct the Provincial Local Government Officer to remove the motion to suspend Mr Himanga from the agenda.
The party sources have also revealed that Mr Chanda wants to protect Mr Himanga in order to facilitate his candidature for the position of Deputy Mayor in the February 22nd 2019 elections.
Efforts to reach Mr Chanda for a comment by time of publishing were futile.
But the sources have indicated that the arrest of Mr Himanga should be a wakeup call for the party leadership to remove the bag eggs from the party on the Copperbelt.
“What is true is that it is not Himanga alone who is involved in several illegalities. We have bad eggs across all structures. If you check police records especially in Ndola, Himanga’s name and several others who are in party leadership such as Geoffrey Chulu, the Vice Ndola District Chairperson appear in the O.Bs ion most police stations for mostly illegal land allocation,” the sources said.
They have since appealed to PF Secretary General Davies Mwila to take an interest in the happenings on the Copperbelt or risk the party losing popularity.
“The view by most Copperbelt residents is that as the PF, we have selfish and greedy leaders who are mostly criminals. That reputation has the potential to harm our party as we go towards 2021. We appeal to the S.G to use the arrest of Himanga to set an example to all party leaders countrywide that illegality will not be tolerated.”
The party sources have also warned Mr Chanda to be careful as he administers the affairs of the party on the Copperbelt or risk being entangled in criminal acts.