HENRY SINYANGWE, CATHERINE MUMBA, Kasama
PATRIOTIC Front (PF) secretary-general Davies Mwila says President Lungu is the ruling party’s candidate for the 2021 general elections and has urged individuals with ambitions to shelve them until 2026.
Mr Mwila said the PF will start holding its elections for its structures on July 1, 2018, in readiness for its 2020 general conference.
Mr Mwila, who was speaking during a fundraising dinner in Kasama on Saturday evening, also welcomed those who stood as independent members of Parliament after being left out of the adoption process.
“Let me emphasise that the party already has a candidate for 2021 in President Edgar Lungu. To those who may have ambitions for the party presidency, democracy says you must shelve them until 2026.
“To those who think this is not democracy, we say it is. The United States of America, which is a model of democracy, allows a system, whether it’s the Democrats or Republicans, where the incumbent goes through unopposed,” Mr Mwila said.
He, however, said he does not expect loyal party members to harm those that cannot stomach having their presidential ambitions thrown in disarray by the party’s decision to field President Lungu in the 2021 general elections.
“There is an unwritten rule in politics that you do not challenge an incumbent. On this score, I do not expect all loyal members in the party to start to watch out for those who may start fomenting trouble in the party simply because they cannot stomach their ambitions,” Mr Mwila said.
He also urged all party members to emulate President Lungu’s humility, loyalty and patriotism if they are to rise through the ranks.
Mr Mwila said party members should focus on fulfilling promises the ruling party made to the Zambian people during the campaigns leading to the 2016 elections.
He urged party members countrywide to rise above differences that engulfed the party during the elections.