Power and Politics

UPND says Lungu’s return to active politics not a surprise, tells him to expect loss of ex-presidents’ rights


Chief Government Spokesperson, Cornelius Mweetwa, says government will not concentrate on the return to active politics of former president, Edgar Lungu, but on the economic transformation agenda of the country.

After endless speculations, Lungu on Saturday in Lusaka whilest addressing Patriotic Front (PF) members at the memorial service of party founding president Micheal Sata announced his come back to politics vowing, “I will not allow factions in the party”.

Mweetwa told Zambia Monitor in Lusaka on Saturday that the ruling United Party for National Development (UPND) was happy that Lungu had come out in the open to announce his return to active politics.

The UPND Spokesperson said the party and government had known for the last two years that Lungu was still active in politics but it was up to him to make it public.

“For us as UPND government would like to place on record that president Edgar Lungu enjoys constitutional and democratic right to be able to participate in the political sphere of our country and that if he so wished, he was welcome back in the political arena,” he said.

Mweetwa said the UPND government was not surprised by the move made by Lungu because it had known that he was still active in politics and wondered why he had continued using tax payers money.

“He can go about his politics, for us it’s non of our business. Our business is to focus on the economic transformative agenda our country. Right now we are faced with high cost of living, mealie meal prices and Hichilema was addressing squarely,” he said.

Mweetwa maintained that the UPND had nothing to do with the confusion which was happening in the party and the PF should start running the affairs of their party.

Meanwhile, Ruth Dante, the United Party for National Development (UPND ) media director, says the rulling party was geared to meet former President, Edgar Lungu, on the political ground.

Dante in a statement on Saturday, said: ” We welcome the news that former President Lungu has decided to come out of retirement and join the political fray once more.”

She said the party had always indicated that the former head of state had a democratic and human right to belong to any political party of choice.

He also had a democratic and political rights to come out of retirement and rejoin the political battlefield to which the UPND wished to welcome him wholeheartedly.

Read More: Breaking: Ex-President Lungu returns to active politics, putting to rest months of speculations

She said the come back would provide the UPND with a platform to engage him as an equal competitor on the political landscape without being shielded by a cloth of a former Head of State.

“Mr Lungu should, however, be weary of a changed political environment to the one he presided over which was full of violence and cadreism, intolerance and failure to respect divergent views,” she said.

“We now call on Secretary to Cabinet Patrick Kangwa to quickly enforce the law on former Presidents conditions of service which the former Republican President has voluntarily forefeited,” she said.

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