Lungu cracks whip

PATRIOTIC Front (PF) secretary general Edgar Lungu has with immediate effect suspended the boards and executive directors of all ruling party non-governmental organizations (NGOs).

And the PF has said it would soon expose and isolate a renegade group that has been fanning confusion in the ruling party following the dismissal of Wynter Kabimba as justice minister and secretary general.

Mr Lungu has since summoned the suspended directors of the PF NGOs to his office today.

He said the measure to suspend the boards and executive directors of the four PF NGOs had been taken to strengthen the decision made by President Michael Sata to dismiss Wynter Kabimba as justice minister and secretary general of the ruling party.

The boards and chief executives of the PF non-governmental organisations were appointed by his predecessor who was fired last August. The PF, under the office of the secretary general, formed various non-governmental organisations to spearhead research, capacity building and institutional growth.

Mr Lungu said in a statement yesterday that he had suspended the executive directors of National Programme for Poverty Reduction (NPPR) and the Policy Monitoring and Research Centre (PMRC).

Mr Lungu, who is Acting President and Minister of Justice and Defence, said he had also suspended the executive directors of the PF research bureau as well as the ruling party’s data centre.

“I have with immediate effect suspended the executive directors of the National Programme for Poverty Reduction (NPPR), Policy Monitoring and Research Centre (PMRC), Research Bureau and PF Data Centre. The measure has been taken to strengthen the decision made by President Sata on August 28th 2014,” Mr Lungu said.

And PF director of communication Brian Hapunda said the ruling party was fully aware that there was a clique of disgruntled individuals who were bitter that President Sata had fired Mr Kabimba and had declared war against the Head of State, his Cabinet and senior party officials.

Mr Hapunda supported Sports Minister Chishimba Kambwili’s statement that there were some renegade and disgruntled PF members who were angry that President Sata had fired Mr Kabimba and had resorted to clandestine and covert activities to divide and weaken the party before announcing their political party.

He said the group of politically frustrated individuals in alliance with a named media house was fighting anyone they considered a threat to their ambitions, adding that President Sata who not long ago was their darling had suddenly become their enemy.

He has challenged those who were aggrieved with President Sata’s decision to part company with Mr Kabimba to leave the party and form their own political party instead of causing confusion in the ruling party.

Mr Hapunda said the agenda of the estranged group of individuals was to clandestinely sow seeds of despondency and hatred by consistently attacking President Sata, Finance Minister Alexander Chikwanda and Justice and Defence Minister Edgar Lungu.

Mr Hapunda stated that President Sata, Mr Chikwanda and Mr Lungu were not moved by the sustained malice and slander from the group because their focus was to continue working to build the country and improve the lives of Zambians. He said time would soon come when the ruling party would crack the whip on the renegade group so that the ruling party could be cleansed.

“The Minister of Sport Chishimba Kambwili who is the PF national youth chairman is correct about the party having some disgruntled members who are bitter with President Sata’s decision to dismiss Mr Kabimba.

We know that they are involved in the clandestine and covert activities to frustrate and cause confusion in the party.

If they have failed to come to terms with the fact that Mr Kabimba has been fired, let them leave the party and concentrate on their plans to form their own party.

We know their agenda and President Sata and Mr Lungu are not moved by the attacks,” Mr Hapunda said.

He said it was unfortunate that the group was propagating politics of hatred, malice and slander adding that the PF was determined to practice mature and civil politics.

Mr Hapunda said the PF was stronger than it was before and that no amount of propaganda against the leadership would divert the attention of Government from delivering to the people.

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