Some senior PF officials in Northern Province have alleged that President Michael Sata wants to replace former Defence Minister Geoffrey Bwalya Mwamba with civil rights activist Kelvin Sampa for Kasama Central.
Amos Katoloshi Chanda who is one of the founder member and close to the leadership at the provincial level alleged that the party had received instructions to start searching for the replacement in Kasama Central.
Efforts to get a comment from President Sata’s press aide George Chellah failed as his mobile phone went unanswered. A short messaging system (SMS) sent to him was not responded to.
“We are told that bakateka wants GBM out because of resigning from ministry of defence. The President feels that GBM betrayed him by choosing bachitimukulu.So we have instructions that we start looking for someone who will replace GBM in Kasama if he is finally expelled by the Central Committee,” said Katoloshi Chanda.
He said that some party officials at the secretariat proposed Kelvin Sampa to replace GBM, a move which has annoyed party officials at the grassroots in the area.
But when contacted for a comment both party secretary general Wynter Kabimba and her deputy Bridget Attanga could not be reached by press time as their phones were switched off.
Chanda feared that if the move to replace the former defence minister in Kasama was true, PF would have challenges convincing both the electorates and the traditional leadership in the region.
“We have assessed these issues and the wrangles in the PF and the biggest loser is the President and not individuals. Kelvin Sampa is our child and we appreciate the donations he is making but there is always a procedure to do things and the procedure he has undertaken to get into politics without sitting down with the family will affect his political career. We shall not support him,” said the official.
He said that the donations Sampa was making were politically inclined as he was preparing to replace GBM in an event that he was finally expelled.
“It is up to the President to stop this whole scandal because in the current form the PF cannot win an election. There are too many divisions within the PF and above all, Zambians feel that the PF has failed them.
Our traditional leaders in Kasama feel that the President Sata and the PF should not be given another chance.
Abantu kuno balelanda ati ba PF babonaushi,” said Katoloshi Chanda.
He said that the resistance could be seen by the way the pro-GBM cadres defended their MP from the continued campaign schemes by Sampa.
“When Sampa was making donations at a community school he kept referring to GBM and supporters of GBM felt offended asked him what he was preparing for. They wanted to know because he is been telling people that he is the next MP.
“Bushe nomba Ba Sampa ekuti he is being sent to campaign here? Do we have a by-election which we don’t know of?” he said.
He said Kasama was delicate and leaders should always take responsibility for their actions rather than annoy people, adding that the greatest challenge the PF and its leadership had was the issue of the Chitimukulu.
“We already have the issue of the Chitimukulu which has not been resolved by the President.
Do they think that if they went ahead and expelled GBM they will have it easy here?
“ Do they think that the decision by GBM to side with his people was an act of cowardice? This is the greatest challenge the PF is facing and if they continue with such schemes they will soon feel the wrath of the membership and the general population here,” said Chanda.