SOME UPND members vying to contest the August elections as members of Parliament (MPs) have complained about the application fee which has allegedly been pegged by the party at K5,000.
But rebutting the complaints, UPND spokesperson Charles Kakoma told the Daily Nation: “Politics are expensive; if you want to become an MP yet you can’t even afford to buy a pair of chitenge for your supporters, why stand?’’
Mr Kakoma wondered how the aspiring MPs would pay the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) nomination fee of K10,000 when adopted by the party if they were complaining about the K5,000.
“The issue is that if you don’t meet the qualifications such as the full Grade 12 certificate and other party requirements, then how are you going to stand for the elections? You will need to buy a chitenge and other campaign materials for your supporters. Politics are expensive, you want to become an MP, yet you can’t even afford to buy a pair of chitenge for your supporters,” he said.
Mr Kakoma urged the Daily Nation reporter to collect a form and possibly stand on one of the political party’s tickets.
“In order for you to understand the fee, I urge you to go and collect an application form and possibly stand on one of our party tickets,” he said.
Mr Kakoma said the funds raised during the application stage would help the party mobilise resources to help the same candidates.
An aspiring UPND parliamentary candidate, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the adoption fee was too high for her and that she was now having second thoughts about standing.
“The adoption fee for our party is too high for a woman like me. The application fee of K5, 000 is non-refundable,” she said.