PF deputy media director Antonio Mwanza says NDC leader Chishimba Kambwili must focus on healing instead of cheap politicking.
And Mwanza has distanced the PF from citizens who have applied for judicial review of the Speaker’s decision to entertain the impeachment motion.
On Wednesday, Kambwili said President Edgar Lungu had been briefed by the intelligence that his members of parliament were not with him hence the bid to halt the impeachment process in the High Court.
But in an interview yesterday, Mwanza advised Kambwili to focus on healing.
“First of all, is he well now? Is he well? Because his health is more important than cheap politicking and honestly speaking, I would advise that the first thing that he should do is to concentrate on his health and to stop cheap politics,” Mwanza said.
“As a seasoned politician, he knows very well that he cannot be abusing the intelligence and bringing up lies to appear that his lies are merited because he is mixing them with the name intelligence report.”
And Mwanza distanced the PF from those who had applied for judicial review in this matter.
“The people that have sued are not the Patriotic Front. The Patriotic Front as an institution can only sue through the Secretary General. When you look at those summons, the people that have sued are private citizens and we do not have control over what private citizens choose to do. We respect their constitutional right to take the matter for judicial review. If the PF was the one suing, I would be able to comment but that is not the case here,” he said.
When reminded that people perceived the applicants as PF surrogates, Mwanza insisted that his party had nothing to do with the court process meant to block the motion.
“You see, this is the problem we have with people that think that only that which serves them is the one which we should respect. Chiwamila galu ku luma mbuzi but mbuzi ikati ilumemo ati nimaloza. Mr Kambwili has taken the impeachment motion to parliament and no one has stopped him so if private citizens also decide to exercise their constitutional right and take that matter to court and challenge it in court, why should Mr Kambwili be concerned and start calling them names? It is not right. He has been allowed to take that matter of impeachment to parliament and no one has stopped him so why is he so worried about others taking the matter also to court? These are legal issues…the private citizens have also taken a legal path to the High Court so Mr Chishimba Kambwili should not be worried about the people who have taken the matter to court because they are also not worried about him,” Mwanza said.
“They are simply exercising their constitutional right. I want to put it on record that it is not the PF which has sued…PF is waiting for Mr Speaker to make a ruling, to either have the impeachment motion tabled on the floor of the House or not to have it and when it is tabled on the floor of the House, the members of parliament will trash it, dissect it and tear it apart with ease and within a day all the arguments will fall off because they are petty, frivolous and they do not stand at law. I want to emphasize that health is very important and people must take care of their health.”
He insisted that the PF was solidly behind President Lungu.
“Now, coming to the so called fears, it must be made very clear that the UPND and Mr Kambwili know very well that that impeachment motion has no chance of survival because the issues they have raised are frivolous, vexatious, speculative and totally false. They know that that impeachment has no chance of survival. In any case, I want to make it very clear, there is no impeachment motion in the House. What has happened is that UPND and Mr Kambwili have filed their intentions to impeach the president with the Clerk of the National Assembly to Mr Speaker. It is now Mr Speaker to decide whether that motion meets the administerbility rule, if it does, Mr Speaker will table it before the House for discussion. Which is why when the House was adjourning, there was no notice of motion to discuss the impeachment motion. The Speaker reserves the right, under the standing orders that govern the House to either bring that BID motion or the Speaker might say, ‘we don’t want the Zambian people to be wasting their time on this frivolous impeachment motion’ and decide not to table it. They know that that impeachment motion has got no chance of survival but they have gone ahead because it is a political strategy to tarnish the image of this country and pretend that there is a governance crisis in this country to the International community and to their financiers who bankroll them, these foreign financiers who have been bankrolling them,” he said.
“If the Speaker doesn’t allow this motion to be tabled before the House, they are again planning that they will use that as a political tool to say that the PF were afraid, to say PF is scared and that PF are muzzling the legislature. But we want to make it very clear that the Patriotic Front remains united behind the leadership of President Edgar Chagwa Lungu, there are no cracks, there is no friction. All members of parliament in the House are solidly behind the leadership of President Edgar Lungu and the UPND and Mr Chishimba Kambwili put together account for less than 34 per cent of the members of parliament in the House. They are a minority, as you are aware, the UPND is there to epitomize the aspirations of Mr Hichilema and those around him.”
He asked Kambwili to stop ‘lying’ to his friends in the UPND that there were some PF MPs willing to support the motion.
“For academic purposes and hypothetically, even if the motion was to pass through, that doesn’t mean the president becomes impeached, there is an elaborate process and procedure under Article 108 where if that happens, the President will be called before the House and he will be accorded the right and freedoms to come with his own lawyers and have his side of the story heard, to defend himself. It is a very long process and we want to put it very clearly that Mr Chishimba Kambwili should stop lying to himself and he should stop lying to his sponsors and financiers and his new found friends in the UPND that there are MPs in the PF who want to vote for impeachment. And to claim that you have intelligence reports which indicate that this is what is happening when in fact you do not even have the locus standi according to the law to even be in possession of the so called intelligence report is a misdemeanor and shows a lack of temperament, seriousness and correct judgement on the part of Mr Kambwili,” said Mwanza.