IT’S not Dr Fred M’membe who has made Hakainde Hichilema lose elections five times, says Copperbelt Socialist Party spokesperson Joseph Kangwa.
When Hichilema and UPND lost to PF in 2006, 2008, 2011, 2015 and 2016 the Socialist Party wasn’t there, Kangwa reminded UPND’s Andrew Banda who on Monday attacked Socialist Party president Dr M’membe demanding that he should respect Hichilema.
Kangwa told Andrew to respect Dr M’membe and not to drag his name into Hichilema’s electoral failures.
He said Andrew shouldn’t blame his party’s failure to win elections in 23 years on Dr M’membe and the Socialist Party.
“The Socialist Party has the right to exist and participate in Zambian politics and elections as an independent political party without any alliances with any other party. Not to belong to any political alliance is not an offence or a sin,” Kangwa said.
He said the opposition space was not a preserve of Hichilema and the UPND.
“The Socialist Party is here to compete for votes with all the political parties that are participating in these elections, including the UPND and PF. The Zambian people are not fools. They choose who they want. Let every party and candidate show why it should be them and not the others who the Zambian people should vote for. There’s no hatred in doing so. And the UPND has been doing this. They have been attacking and belittling the Socialist Party. They have actually been very vicious on us and the social media is awash with their attacks of us,” Kangwa said. “If we are a small party as they say, why should they be so troubled by our presence? Right now there’s no big or small party. No one has MPs. There’s a clean slate. Parliament has been dissolved. We will see who becomes a big party or a small party on August 12. The arrogance of being big should be reserved because no one is big right now. And for UPND if they are not careful this may be their worst election ever. Mark my words. People are tired of them losing elections six times. They have been losing elections for 23 years. They belong ku wire.”
He said no matter what lies or propaganda the UPND peddled about the Socialist Party and Dr M’membe they won’t be able to get them out of the race.
“This election is open to all of us. This is not 2016 where there were only two choices – PF or UPND. There are more than two choices this year. And SP cannot be ignored. It’s a factor in these elections whether they like it or not. Bamo baleya ku wire uno mwaka,” said Kangwa. “If UPND wants an open and protracted fight with us we are more than ready for that. Let’s see who will come out more bruised!”