President Michael Sata is too old and his health is not alright to run for the second term of office in 2016, National Restoration Party (NAREP) president Elias Chipimo has observed.
Chipimo said his party was deeply troubled and concerned by the violence that had rocked the Patriotic Front (PF) following the jostling for power by factions within the ranks of the ruling party that had left the party in power at the verge of disintegration barely two years after it formed government.
Chipimo has stated that the main concerns were centered on the effect that there had been fierce public confrontations between members of the ruling party which had created unnecessary tension and a climate of intimidation in a country where citizens had enjoyed peace and tranquility.
Chipimo said it was clear from the events of last week where two PF factions clashed in which public and private property was damaged that the police had become more powerless than ever to maintain law and order.
He said it was unfortunate that the police who were the custodian of law and order had been turned into bystanders when lawlessness which he said was being perpetrated by people in the PF was becoming the order of the day.
“In true Animal Farm style, the cadres marching on behalf of their party are allowed to demonstrate without permits and ransack public and private property while any members of the opposition that seek to hold even private meetings are subjected to harassment and intimidation by PF cohorts with no assistance from the lawfully established authorities,” Chipimo said in a statement.
He said the PF factions calling for the adoption of President Sata as their 2016 sole candidate were doing so to preserve their status quo adding that such calls were not only unpatriotic but insensitive and irresponsible.
“It is clear that President Sata’s health is not at its best. This combined with his age and the pressure of the office of the president makes it completely shocking that those within his own party would want him to continue to preside over the complex affairs of a nation such as ours. Clearly the task of a president requires a much more energetic set of hands than those of President Sata,” Chipimo said.
Chipimo explained that leading a country like Zambia is not a three-day a week or daily medical check-ups type of job saying it required a twenty four-hour vigilance, energetic thinking and determination.
He explained that if the PF members truly cared about Sata’s health, they would desist from pretending that it was in Zambia’s best interest for the President to be subjected to another hectic and laboriously tedious campaign trail for the presidency in 2016.
Chipimo said those who were endorsing President Sata for the 2016 general elections were doing so to serve their own political interests.