I have decided to join the Patriotic Front (PF) so that I can work with President Edgar Lungu who has demonstrated an inclusive and selfless spirit of leadership to develop the country, says former United Party for National Development (UPND) Vice President for Administration Richard Kapita.
He said this in Mwinilunga yesterday at a public rally addressed by President Lungu.
Mr. Kapita said it was with a heavy heart that he decided to dump the UPND he had laboured since 1998 to build.
He said he was aware that his colleagues in UPND would be disappointed with his decision but that he was ready to move on with the PF.
“I would like to apologise to the PF for being on the opposition for 17 years. Iam not going to look at what others will say, but am ready to work with President Lungu after long searches for an ally to continue with the political journey,” Mr. Kapita said.
He had decided to join hand with President Lungu because he was a selfless leader who was eager to develop the country.
And President Lungu has welcomed Mr Kapita and other defectors to PF urging them to acquaint themselves with the PF manifesto and work diligently with the party.
President Lungu was in Mwinilunga to commission the earth moving equipment the district local authority has procured.
He also toured the district hospital before he held a public rally at Freedom Square.
And President Lungu has warned some Patriotic Front (PF) North Western Province executive members opposed to new members joining the ruling party he would dissolve the committee if they did not give him a reasonable explanation. President Lungu gave the provincial PF leadership up to today to give him satisfactory reasons why they were not accepting new members from other political partues.
He threatened to dissolve the committee on Friday evening during a meeting organized by the PF North Western Provincial executive at Kansanshi Hotel where he noticed that some committee members were meeting.
President Lungu said the PF won the January 20, 2015 Presidential election because of the support it got from the MMD.
Mr. Lungu said he would not waste time with selfish leaders when the opposition politicians we are organizing themselves.
He warned the PF provincial executive committee that he was aware that some members were opposed to recruiting new members from other parties because they wanted to safe-guard their positions in the ruling party.
“People from other parties have been telling me that they want to join the PF but they cannot because you are blocking them. Today, I went to the market and people were complaining that you are not accommodating them. So, how can the party grow?” Mr Lungu asked.
President Lungu warned the party officials that they should not tempt him to dissolve the provincial party leadership because he still wanted to work with them.
“Don’t force me to dissolve you because I don’t want to dissolve anyone but if you continue blocking new members, I will have no option but to dissolve you. I don’t want to hear stories that the party in the province is growing when you are not welcoming new members,” he said.
President Lungu reminded the party members who were present to put the interest of the party first because the party was bigger than all of them.
He called on members to be loyal to the party just as he was under the leadership of President Sata (late) and observed that loyalty was what made him rise in PF.
Mr Lungu said it was sad that the provincial leadership was trying to block new members simply because they wanted to consolidate their positions while their counterparts in the UPND were working hard to mobilise themselves and recruiting new members.
He said that those who were not ready to welcome new members were free to leave the party because the tenents of democracy were founded on numbers.