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Acting President Dr Guy Scott cheses Lungu away

Lusaka - Acting President Dr Guy Scott yesterday chased away PF secretary-general Edgar Lungu and his team from his office after they attemp...

Lusaka - Acting President Dr Guy Scott yesterday chased away PF secretary-general Edgar Lungu and his team from his office after they attempted to brief him on the meeting they held earlier at Government Complex.

And the PF has called for applications from its members wishing to run for president.

Yesterday, 63 members of parliament endorsed Lungu as their preferred candidate ahead of the presidential by-election.

The members of parliament met at Government Complex, where they agreed to adopt Lungu as the party’s presidential candidate for the by-election.

This was against acting President Scott’s decision to cancel the party meeting yesterday.

After signing the petition, the members attempt to seek audience with acting President Scott at Cabinet Office but were asked to leave. Later, the seemingly confused group, led by Lungu, was left stranded outside Cabinet Office. An attempt from journalists to get an interview from Lungu failed, but Chishimba Kambwili told journalists that the issue was being handled internally.
Acting President Dr Guy Scott cheses Lungu away
“Sorry, members of the press, we are not issuing any statements at the moment. These matters are being handled internally,” he said.

Earlier during a briefing, acting President Scott said he would never give up on the principles upon which the PF was founded: to allow members of the party at the grassroots to have a say in the running of the organisation.

“Let me remind everybody that the PF was built on a platform of people at the bottom wielding power,” he said. “The PF is not a kingdom of the privileged members of parliament who are scared of losing their seats, but the grassroots. These are the people to whom the PF belongs. The grassroots need to vote for their own candidate. That’s the image around which the PF was formed.”

Acting President Scott said a petition in which 63 members of parliament had endorsed Lungu as the party’s presidential candidate was contrary to the provisions of the party constitution.

He said only a general conference had the mandate to choose a presidential candidate for the party and that so far, preliminary payments had been made to Mulungushi University, which would host the general conference.

“We have started putting in place the necessary logistics such as transportation of delegates to the general conference. The question of money does not hold. We had many by-elections in Mangango, Solwezi, Vubwi, Solwezi and Zambezi West held almost at the same time; did anyone talk about money? Why now? We are keen to be true to the principles of the PF, of going to a general conference. I need to be replaced by an elected candidate,” said acting President Scott.

Speaking to journalists later after failing to meet the acting President, Wina said the meeting held at Government Complex was not a central committee meeting but that a group of PF members of parliament had met to come up with a suggestion on how to adopt the party’s presidential candidate.

“The people in the provinces have to make decisions also. We will have to accept nominations from the provinces on which format they prefer in choosing a candidate,” said Wina, who chaired the meeting at Government Complex.

Meanwhile, scores of PF youths from around Lusaka yesterday marched to Cabinet Office, demanding a general conference to elect the party’s candidate for the presidential by-election.

The youths carried a banner with messages reading: “Respect Sata and his grassroots”, “We want a convention”.

The youths were, however, interrupted by alert police officers, who chased them away from the premises. Most of the youths managed to escape, but some were beaten and picked up by the anti-riot police.

“We just came here to restore order and peace. We have managed to do that. We have also managed to pick up some of the youths that were involved,” said Zambia Police spokesperson Charity Munganga, who was part of the police squad at Cabinet Office. — The Post.
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