Barely a week after political party leaders pledged to avoid attacking one another after issuing resolutions which were agreed to during the indaba called by the Catholic Bishops and attended by other church mother bodies, politicians have reverted to their old habits of issuing derogatory statements against one another.
In her latest outburst against UPND leader Hakainde Hichilema PF Deputy Secretary General Mumbi Phiri in apparent reference to Mr Hichilema said she does not like mentioning some names because they make her lose her appetite.
Ms Phiri, who was featuring on the Platform radio program On Joy FM, got irked when listeners, who participated via text messages, kept blaming her party for the economic hardships in some parts of the country, such as Kabwe and other parts of Central Province.They said the that PF had failed to revive companies such as Mulungushi Textiles and Kapiri Glass company.
Ms Phiri advised the listeners to stop blaming the PF over issues they were not party to, claiming that most of the economic mess the country is facing was because of the privatisation of state companies, which was done way before the PF took over office.
In another reference to Mr Hichilema, Ms Phiri said some people should explain the criteria they used to acquire properties of companies they never worked for.
“Does that person follow the history of this country? Fortunately we have very few people who think like her, people know when Kapiri Glass company was sold, it was long before PF came into power, Mulungushi textile is jointly owned by a Chinese company and the Zambian government and the majority shareholder is the Chinese company. Get to know the nitty-gritty and the history, then you will understand than you just talking.
“I didn’t mention your HH, in fact, I don’t even want to mention some names because they make me lose my appetite, but the facts still remains: we have people in this country who benefited from privatisation. Some of us talk like this because we have relatives who died when Lima Bank was privatized for a song and to see those people who never worked for Lima Bank occupying the houses which belonged to Lima Bank, we ask and I wish they could tell us the criteria they used for them to buy houses for companies they never worked for. It’s really sad and the facts are on the table.
“People must not come on the radio with bitterness, speak on the facts, privatisation was there, Lima Bank was sold and some of our brothers and sisters are beneficiaries of the assets of companies which they never worked for,” she said.
Asked if she was not practicing hate speech Ms Phiri said she was simply calling a spade by its name.
“…Give me another name for me to call them that’s what they are called, and I don’t think in my interview I have mentioned HH, Kunda remind me where I mentioned HH, I am above that! You know when I say a fact and it’s connected to your leader that’s not my fault, mentioning some names makes me lose my appetite. No it’s not hate because they want to force words in my mouth, if anything I mentioned my sister Edith Nawakwi and I mentioned her because she gave me an assignment, am suppose to go to Soweto market,” she said.
She also called on traditional leaders to avoid partisan politics.
“…Shakafuswa is a politician mind you and he has the right to belong to wherever his heart desires but not a chief’s wife. Those 5 wives of chiefs who said they are going to support President Edgar Lungu did you see them lift a PF symbol? They were just speaking and every chief where you go to they were saying they will support the government of the day.
“By our Constitution our chiefs are not supposed to be partisan, now you see a chief’s wife lifting a symbol and I can see from your surname that’s your area my brother advise your chief’s wife not lower herself to my level, she is respected, she is our mother and am giving her advise not that am taking anything from her,for her to be lifting a symbol she is degrading herself to my level she is very respected, I’m just a cadre.
“And the person from Kabwe who said zinc mine is closed is it PF who closed? Continued Ms Phiri in my opening remarks I said the disadvantage we had as a country was privatisation, even the money hasn’t been accounted for and that’s a fact whether you want to change or what and the way you are speaking passionately that PF is going, we heard this even on the 20th kunda kunda I was here with my brother in law who saying wufa wadula even that political party that will come are telling me they will give you food for free, we all have to work to make ends meet so all those are just stories in fact to those elections in January were more crucial than these ones.”
Ms Phiri also laughed off Obvious Mwaliteta’s reason for his defection to the UPND calling him a political prostitute who joined the PF at the eleventh hour.
“If that complaint of a grade 12 certificate is coming from a person like me who was not in Parliament when the was that law was passed it was going to be understood. I think my brother Mwaliteta even when the debates were going on he knew that he was a is it a grade 2 or 5, he knew deep down his heart and when that bill passed the first reading, second reading he had a chance to change and that Constitution could have come with an amendment and am speaking as a former Parliamentarian who understand the procedure of Parliament.
“You can’t let a bill pass first reading, second reading, third reading and when it’s passed that is when you start complaining. It’s amazing but look at the background of Mwaliteta where did he come from? My brother is just proving that he is a political prostitute because he wasn’t even PF. He came at the good will of my late President Michael Sata, he came at the eleventh hour together with my sister Silvia Masebo. Hon Mwaliteta that is his nature. I think even saying that he is a grade 2 or 5 is an understatement, it’s in his nature,” she said.