By Nation Reporter
THE UPND has challenged the Patriotic Front (PF) to name and shame the traditional leaders from Southern Province who have been enlisted on the campaign trail for Hakainde Hichilema and his running mate Geoffrey Bwalya Mwamba.
The UPND says it has a lot of respect for the traditional leadership in the country and would never reduce the chiefs to political cadres parroting political slogans.
UPND presidential spokesperson Edward Mumbi said his party had not at any time engaged chiefs from Southern Province to be part of the campaign team of Mr Hichilema and Mr Mwamba ahead of the August general elections.
He said the tribal propaganda the PF had continued to propagate had since beaten the dust and Zambians were no longer paying attention to messages that were not addressing their economic and social challenges.
Mr Mumbi said if the PF had the names of the traditional leaders who had been to Northern and Luapula Province to tribally campaign for the UPND; it would be politically correct for the traditional leaders to be named so that Zambians could know them.
He said the UPND was a decent and civilised political organisation that would never abuse traditional leaders for the sake of winning the general elections.
Mr Mumbi said the UPND’s popularity had grown exponentially across the country and that the party was going to win the general elections with a clean campaign devoid of violence or any acts outside the electoral rules. “The PF as a ruling party must have accurate information and they must not shy away from promoting good campaign programmes. If they are sure and know the chiefs from Southern Province who have been engaged by our party to campaign in Northern and Luapula Provinces, let PF name and shame them. As the UPND, we have never asked chiefs from Southern Province to be part of the campaigns for Mr Hichilema and his running mate, Mr Mwamba. We are not going to reduce our respected traditional leaders to cadres to parrot political slogans,” he said.
Mr Mumbi said as of yesterday, Mr Hichilema, Mr Mwamba, Dr Guy Scott, Miles Sampa, Mutale Nalumango and other senior leaders were in Kasama where they were expected to have a mammoth rally that would effectively eclipse the once dominant PF in the area.