PRESIDENT Lungu has called on the electorate in Petauke Central Constituency to rally behind Patriotic Front (PF) candidate Dora Siliya to enable them to expedite development which they have been denied for almost two years.
He has also called on traditional leaders in Petauke District in Eastern Province to embrace opposition leaders campaigning for their candidates in the Petauke by-elections.
Addressing a rally at Kaulu Day Secondary School in Chief Kalindawalo’s chiefdom yesterday, Mr Lungu asked the voters to give him Dora Siliya for “effective development”. Dora Siliya is one of the people that have come to the PF through a working relationship that exists between President Lungu and former President Rupiah Banda.
“Much as electorates have a choice to choose a candidate they want, I also have a democratic right to choose which MPs to work with and while I have been criticised that government should not be selective on who to work with, I will favour the PF,” Mr Lungu said.
Other candidates contesting the seat are Allan Zulu of the UPND and Ignasio Phiri of UNIP.
Mr Lungu said voters in Petauke should not be cheated by the opposition that the Tuesday elections are meant to change government because he is still President.
President Lungu also warned that he will not tolerate PF members who marginalise new members. He said the party is for all.
He said those that feel they can not work with new members should leave the PF saying the late President Michael Sata taught him to be accommodative of new members.
The President said he differed with a lot of people prior to the Presidential elections in January but has since embraced them.
“Those against new members are lucky because I am not in the mood to show my strength. I am just watching them and they will be judged based on their work and dues given on merit,” he cautioned.
The President has further advised Ms Siliya to ensure that she focuses on her developmental programmes after being voted into office.
He reiterated the need to end the talk on tribalism and to have peaceful campaigns.
He said Petauke will benefit from the 920 boreholes donated by the Chinese government and equipment for making dams and rehabilitating roads, among others.