Kantanshi member of parliament (PF) Anthony Mumba says PF has been on life support and it will be disastrous to bring back former president Edgar Lungu into the leadership fold.
But PF founder member Charity Banda said the PF must for now hold on against holding a national conference in order to re-organise the party, contrary to her long held view that the party needed a conference to elect a new leader.
Speaking during an interview, Mumba, in reaction to fellow PF member Bowman Lusambo’s assertion that that the UPND were stealing votes and allocating some to the Socialist Party (SP) to create an impression that PF was finished, said the most important thing to remember is that PF has been on “life support” because of what he termed as inconsistencies of who is leading the party, what direction the party is taking and who would lead the party in that direction.
“He is right by saying that the impression that the party is dead is true because if you are going to have the poor results that we have been seeing in Lupososhi, which is the first constituency PF formed and won, is a clear indication that there is need for PF to improve on leadership,” Mumba said. “The second is at a time that UPND is struggling to deal with the cost of living, struggling to deal with the issues of the mines, but they comfortably win in Chililabombwe where KCM is still unsettled is another clear indication that the UPND has got its leadership act in the right direction. That’s why they are able to win an election in the midst of even a mealie meal crisis.”
Mumba said the PF needs to sort out the leadership mess, and not what he said the continued business as usual approach and arrogance among the leaders.
But he said bringing back Lungu was not the solution, as that would even be more disastrous.
“That will be disastrous, disastrous agenda for PF to have President Edgar Lungu come back. Times have changed. What PF needs is a new face of leadership, one that is devoid of the issues of corruption, thuggery and all those nasty things that made PF lose from its own agenda of looking after the poor, when we saw that leaders in PF amassed massive amounts of wealth to the extent that they were failing to explain where they got it from,” Mumba said. “So to me as MP for Kantanshi I am putting it on record that it will be a disastrous move by president Edgar Lungu … especially after that humiliating loss.”
Mumba said president Lungu is supposed to be assisting the former ruling party find a suitable leader devoid of the issues of “thuggery, corruption, theft and possible arrest of other possible activities that they were involved in. So that’s what Edgar Lungu needs to do.
He said he did not see the PF going anywhere and becoming relevant for checks and balances that would match the UPND in as far as governance was concerned.