Monday, February 26, 2024

Move over thugs, Mwaliteta is in charge


By Chimwemwe Mwanza

Something insignificant to the naked eye – which has a politically seismic implication happened in the week. Unprovoked and from nowhere emerged one Obvious Mwaliteta. He launched an unhinged tirade at everything in his sight. Well, even after a thorough interrogation of his remarks, it’s difficult to comprehend his waffling disguised as a media briefing.

Wagging a threatening index finger at the audience, his delivery was brute as the audience cheered him all the way amid pounding claps. Understandably so, he was speaking to an audience that for long had been victims of a repressive regime – that had conspired to make cadreism a part of our social and economic fabric.

As the briefing progressed, he accused his own government of being too accommodating to PF aligned individuals. As if not enough, he further chastised police for not effecting arrests of people linked to deaths of UPND cadres – a claim he could not back with evidence. His call for a return to a police state was carefully nuanced in the false allegation that PF cadres were running amok in public trading places.

Now, here is the tacit interpretation of Mwaliteta’s instruction to the Minister of Local Government Garry Nkombo: Go to these public trading places and kick out all traders with links to the PF. After Minister Nkombo is done kicking out PF aligned traders, Mwaliteta expects him to hand these sites to UPND cadres. Astonishing right? How is it possible that a party apparatchik can muster such gusto to issue such instructions to Ministers – in this new dawn regime for that matter?

Not only was he inciting police to start making arbitrary arrests of citizens but Mwaliteta is openly advocating for a return to vigilantism. This makes mockery to the UPND’s stand against retribution and vindictiveness. Osayibala, most of these cadres in bus stations and markets have no political affiliation, they simply wear party regalia to protect their businesses from extortionists. It might not be surprising that the PF cadres or traders in Mwaliteta’s sight have already swapped PF regalia for the red berets and overalls thus shifted their allegiances to the UPND – same old wine but in a new bottle to make it sound simple.

Back to Mwaliteta’s briefing. While it is tempting to dismiss this as an isolated ranting by an overly exuberant cadre, Mwaliteta is not an ordinary party card-carrying member. He is the UPND’s Lusaka provincial chairperson and serves in the party’s National Management Committee. Therefore, his proximity to the top UPND brass and by extention to the President magnifies his views. And optics come into play here.

The fact that there has been a loud silence from the UPND leadership regarding this episode makes for an interesting observation. Could it be that Mwaliteta’s ramblings were sound bites of similar but much larger conversations taking place in the UPND circles? Maybe not but it’s possible.

On the flipside, it’s easy to share Mwaliteta’s pain, frustration, and anger. He is a victim of injustice and was incarcerated on trumped up charges. He served nearly half a year in prison simply for standing up to electoral malfeasance. This ordeal projected him as a political martyr and elevated his moral standing in the political fraternity. That he abhors corruption is well documented which is why he quit PF to join the UPND.

At the height of PF’s feast, it was unheard off to walk away from the dinner table but Mwaliteta did the unthinkable and left the then governing party – demonstrating that he was not in politics to loot but serve. His behaviour over the weekend amounted to a backflip.

And this press briefing? It was ill advised to say the least. It’s chopped off some of his hard-earned credibility but most of all, he wasted his time directing his fury at the wrong people – the marketeers and street vendors alike. There might well be a possibility that some of these traders that he is chastising today woke up in the wee hours of the morning of the 12th of August 2021 to cast their vote in favour of his party.

Just a reminder that Zambia’s descent to a police state was not instant but was gradual. And it began with ranking party officials directing and controlling matters of governance – just like the instructions that Mwaliteta is issuing. Seeing people in handcuffs and being led to prison is good for cameras and should only excite narcists but what good does it serve the country if these same people are then able to walk out on Nolles or acquittals a year later? Leave administration of justice matters to law enforcement agencies.

And No politician should be allowed to breed anarchy or force violence on Zambians, it’s unnecessary. Don’t we as people have more pressing matters that the UPND faithful can look at than focusing on irritating distractions? Mwaliteta is better advised to revisit history. Osayibala, the likes of Paul Moonga, Kennedy Kamba and one Jay Jay Banda – just to mention a few – once yielded enormous power beyond the reach of the state security apparatus.

Where are they today?

The only thing this author supports is Kabwe Warriors and Liverpool. He remains nothing but a patriot. For now, he is no longer taking feedback.


  1. This is the guy that was and has been in the field so he knows and understands what was going on during the time of iron fist rule…mwanza why dont you write something about soccer kaili mu supporta kabwe warroirs na liverpool.

  2. We wait to see what Bally’s reaction to this will be at his 14 hrs press conference. If Bally fails to discipline Mwaliteta, then he should expect his authority as President to be seriously undermined. No sane Zambian today wants to go back to a situation that prevailed under the PF where cadres divided up markets and bus stops in the city among themselves and extorted money from marketeers and bus drivers for themselves. Just as no sane Zambian wants to go back to the UNIP era vigilantism where citizens could not enter GRZ retail shops and markets without producing UNIP cards. We have had enough as Zambians of this nonsense. It is time for Bally to use his press conference today and stamp his authority over the matter. If he fails to deal with this issue decisively, he will only have…

  3. … himself to blame when people begin to lose confidence in him. The opportunity to stamp his authority over the matter and decisively nip it in the bud is now. If he does not do so now, he will not be able to address the issue later and Zambians will be disappointed with him for failure to use his office to deal with the matter decisively.

  4. I don’t care if your name is HH, KK or Blair…..we do not want cadres back at markets or bus stations.

    If you insist on bringing them back, you will get booted out in 5 years. And HH will be the first and last president from Southern province.

  5. Mr. Mwaliteta, please my brother, be mindful about this temptation of trying to get your cadres into trading places such as Markets and Bus Stops. Do not betray the 2.8million people that voted your party into power. These same cadres you are saying should form branches in these trading places are the very ones who led to the downfall of the PF regime. Your cadres will not be any different from those of the PF. The UPND will not be able to control these cadres. My humble request is: Find your cadres other places where they can form their offices. Places like trading places and schools should not be politicised. Cadres have no capacity to manage anything in these trading places. They do not even have the legal backing to carrying out such duties. They are not even trained to maintain Law…

  6. Point of correction Chimwemwe, Mwaliteta did not leave PF because of corruption. He just got frustrated because he was left in the cold due to ka issue ka grade 12. He could could not get adopted going into the August 11, 2016, he thought moving to UPND will offer him a new lease of life.

  7. Yes mwaliteta, pleas more action , not just words…….

    The 2.8 million mostly youth who voted for UPND are expecting a fair crack at the pie…

    Most trading spaces in public spaces were given to PF caders……….needs revisiting.

    People were undressed , brutalised, maimed and murdered by known PF caders simply for wearing red or nor supporting PF……..

    We need all those cases investigated , documents are there……..

    After the perpetrators are dealt with , we need to deal with who was responsible for those thugs , who was sending them ,who was paying them , who was supposed to be protecting the public…

    Mwaliteta, we trust you are up to the task….

  8. Mwaliteta ,

    offer an amnesty to accomplices of PF cader crimes against the public and opposition, ………..

    we need the actual perpetrators, ring leaders and the people sending and sponsoring those thugs to be dealt with……

    If these investigations lead to Kennedy kamba , kapoyongo, KZ or Monga, they need to be prosecuted ………

    Just offer whistle blowers an amnesty , they will sing, and sing………

  9. Where’s Kampyongo, the senior PF Cadre? In his reign, he would have already arrested Mwaliteta for breach of good conduct likely to cause anarchy. But the forward government does not matter what you say for it believes in the freedom of expression. You can express your furiousness to an extent of bursting, it just weighs your vomits. This is same with Sean Tembo who has been ranting day in day out but new dawn government is reasonably weighing his vomits. His days are numbered.

  10. It is unfair and of no public good to only go after the illiterate hungry PF cader thugs who were being used like parapets to attack the dehumanise the public and opposition…….

    We need the parapet masters who were pulling the strings……..

    They know who they are , we know who they are …………

    Your days are numbered , we told you those PF thugs you are using will one day turn against you………they will sing and sing…..

    That day is fast approaching………

  11. is unfair and of no public good to only go after the illiterate hungry PF cader thugs who were being used like parapets to attack the dehumanise the public and opposition…….

  12. It is unfair and of no public good to only go after the illite.rate hungry PF cader thugs who were being used like para.pets to attack the de.humanise the public and opposition…….

    We need the masters who were pulling the strings……..

    They know who they are , we know who they are …………

    Your days are numbered , we told you those PF thugs you are using will one day turn against you………they will sing and sing…..

    That day is fast approaching………

  13. Looks like Chimwemwe has now like some PF sympathizers woken up to the negative effects of having political cadres in markets. Your voice was missing when PF cadres did exactly what you are wishing UPND not to do. As we move along there will be many people wanting UPND to maintain law and order which they deliberately cast a blind eye on when their PF was in power. In saying this we do not encourage that political cadres take charge of markets and bus stations. It is wrong!

  14. The PF masters who were pulling the strings of the PF cader thug para.pets to de.humanise the public used stolen money to bribe those thugs…….

    Now the thugs are hungry…………

    offer them a better future of jobs , they will lead the authorities to the ring leaders and the mas.ters………..

    who we belive were in green buildings with a direct line to plot one……….

    The streets will not be content until the leaders and sponsors of their misery are dealt with……..

  15. #5 avoid mentioning region… zambia is not eastern province alone but a union of 9 different regions and any nigga from these regions can get…

  16. I salute Bally for putting his foot down on the issue of cadres in markets and bus stops. Let an amicable solution be found among political parties and council, as Bally has guided, as to who has a stall or shop in the market. It would even be better just to depoliticise the issue altogether by stopping to use party membership to get a place in the market. In addition, more markets should be built. Had Bally backtracked on the issue, he would have looked weak in the eyes of many Zambians.

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