KABWATA Member of Parliament Given Lubinda has joined the presidential race after successfully submitting his nomination papers to Acting President Dr Guy Scott and Patriotic Front (PF) acting secretary general Bridget Atanga.
Mr Lubinda, who submitted his nomination papers at Government House, said he was a good PF candidate and stood a good chance of winning the by-elections in January 2015.
Speaking to journalists, the Kabwata lawmaker said he decided to join the presidential race after serious consultations with his supporters.
“It is very humbling to successfully file in my nomination papers particularly because people organised everything without my involvement,” he said.
Mr Lubinda said on Monday last week during the Central Committee meeting, his constituency office called him that there were more than 200 people gathered at the office.
“When I went to address them they had three questions for me. Why was I quiet at the time when my party needed my voice? Was I going to contest as a president and indeed if I was not going to contest, which candidate was I going to support?
In answering these three questions, I said sometimes it is good to listen to the people and choose when to speak,” he said.
Mr Lubinda said he could not speak after President Michael Sata’s burial because there were too many actors on the stage and too much noise.
He said after President Sata’s burial he could not join the debate because the Central Committee had not yet advertised the position.
“I also mentioned to them that I would make myself available to serve the people of Zambia, to serve as president of the PF and that I consider offering myself available to the party provided that there was a clear playing ground,” he said.
“I think I was extremely humbled by the number of supporters who turned up to show support. As I was looking for my cheque book to sign the nomination fee, people just came out and started donating money and they paid the K20, 000 for me,” he said.
Mr Lubinda said he had always been a loyal member of PF even before President Michael Sata dropped him from his ministerial position.