Canisius Banda’s bombshell for the UPND
The former UPND vice-president for politics Canisius Banda’s latest salvo aimed at the man he once vocally defended showed Hakainde Hichilema in unflattering terms. A former loyalist and confidant of the UPND 5-time serial election loser, seemingly, Canisius Banda was using the UPND inside information he obtained in those days to expose the man who sidelined him as the presidential running mate and suspended him after the know-it-all UPND billionaire businessman lost again in the recently held presidential election when he said that Hichilema did not have the very basis, foundation or premise to claim victory in the just-ended polls, the UPND president was merely shooting in the dark (“UPND doomed – Canisius”, Daily Nation, October 15, 2016). Truly, Canisius Banda’s advice that Hichilema must desist from posturing and masquerading as the internationally recognised Zambia’s President a gimmick that was not only delusional, but had the danger of befuddling his vision and outlook on life, but was also an illegality has left many UPND members and Hichilema’s closest supporters especially those in the ‘Bantu Botatwe’ community of Southern province, in shock. Canisius Banda’s painted the UPND president, as unworthy of Zambia’s high office, and cited many examples to explain why. No wonder Canisius Banda’s revelation has caused a political storm in the UPND, as the unpleasant allegations therein have given Hichilema’s opponents in the ruling party, a field day. As expected, his die-hard supporters, however, were furious, and as God would have it they mounted a counter-offensive to turn Canisius Banda into an item of national scorn. Admittedly, the UPND public relations team would now be in overdrive, trying to deflate the damage Canisius Banda’s bombshell for the UPND has caused. They see him as out to undermine the UPND president’spolitical career, and view the bombshell as a work influenced by malice and sour grapes after Canisius Banda fell out with Hakainde Hichilema. And what could be worse, Canisius Banda’s revelations were not only humiliating to the UPND and its EU and US backers, they have also done more harm than good for the political ambitions of Hakainde Hichilema, who must reinvent himself in readiness for the sixth attempt in the 2021 presidential race – God willing.
Mubanga Luchembe, LUSAKA
HH needs help!
Our brother HH, needs help in order for him to see that President Lungu did not need to “rig” or “steal” an election for him to emerge victorious at the polls. There are a number of reasons why HH actually lost the Presidential election “fair and square.” There is no way HH was going to win the 2016 elections when he had lost the easier election of January 2015. It is time it dawned on him that he lost the election, period! Let him dust himself up and move on. Life doesn’t begin nor end with winning the presidency. By the way, winning the presidency is not like any other ambition which may be guaranteed. In Zambian presidential elections, it would appear there is always the divine hand at work. Here are some of the reasons why I believe HH lost the just ended presidential election: 1. The ECL that HH faced in the August 2016 election was not the same as the one he lost to in January 2015. The Lungu of 2015 was a frail, little known and a politically battered and weak candidate. In January 2015, for instance, HH had a field day campaigning, with the help of some MMD members, while his opponent faced open and sustained opposition from within his party, spearheaded by Guy Scott. Against all odds, ECL only campaigned for less than 30 days and won. Therefore, there was no way such a person could fail to win the next election after being able to campaign for one year and six months. After all, the “tag of being alcoholic” and a “sorry sight” could no longer hold water. The man had come to be distinguished as a Statesman and good to look at. 2. Other than the three traditional UPND strongholds, there was a writing on the wall that the PF had achieved remarkable progress especially in the area of infrastructure development. It was most likely that out of objectivity, the citizenry would resolve to maintain the PF in power. Regime change was not a forceful sentiment among the potential voters. “Sonta apo wa bomba” was, therefore, more than a PF campaign slogan, but a statement of fact. UPND failed to counteract that factual statement. 3. Unlike the MMD under RB in 2011, the PF under ECL did not take a casual approach to the campaign. The PF campaign machinery never took anything for granted. In their quest to retain political power, the PF never left any stone un-turned, as they canvassed for every vote. 4. President Lungu utilised the privilege of incumbency to the fullest. This is the privilege he did not have in January 2015 when he had won the presidency, even though he just campaigned for such a short time. His message of continuity with development made a lot of common sense. 5. Zambians are very religious people. It is very clear that President Lungu had won the hearts of many people of faith that he was a humble and God fearing man. After meeting the Pope at the Vatican for almost 30 minutes, it further endeared him a place in the hearts of many Catholic faithfuls. How could a faithful Catholic deny a vote a man who had gone to seek the Pope’s blessing? Never! As for the majority of the Protestant and Evangelical Christian, it was common knowledge that they had seen God’s hand of favour upon President Lungu. The clear sign of God’s resurrection power seen at work in President Lungu’s rejuvenated life, was reason enough for them to troop in numbers to the next polling station to cast their vote for him. 6. The UPND’s ten point economic plan was not compelling enough as to warrant a change of heart of the electorate. It also lacked a central theme which simple minded people could run with. 7. It is common knowledge that HH only won the election in his three traditional strongholds, namely: Southern, Western and North-Western. How possible is it then for someone to even have the audacity to claim that they had won the election based on the results they got from the three provinces? That does not add up. The gentleman just lost the election which was by and large, free and fair. Therefore, the earlier HH is made to see the reality on the ground, the better. He did not lose his election at the Concourt, but at the ballot box. GBM must help HH to have a reality check. Long live Zambia, and God bless the nation.
Charles Mwila Mutambala