By SILUMESI MALUMO
THE yawning fissures in the ill-fated United Party for National Development (UPND) dominated opposition alliance continued to widen yesterday as UPND showed its open disdain for its main partner, the National Democratic Party (NDC), by contemptuously ignoring allegations of dishonesty by the latter’s defacto leader Chishimba Kambwili.
A former UPND presidential aide says the party’s president, Hakainde Hichilema, would easily sacrifice an alliance for his personal ambitions.
The two main partners in the alliance have this week been locked in verbal sparring since the UPND decided to field a candidate for a forthcoming local government by-election in Kitwe. This has angered the NDC which expected UPND to support its candidate.
Early this week Mr Kambwili held a press briefing where he said his party was deeply disappointed with the dishonest behaviour of the UPND, but would rally behind the latter’s candidate in the Katuba parliamentary by-election.
But yesterday, former UPND presidential advisor Richard Kachingwe said it was now clear Mr Kambwili was being used in “the so- called opposition alliance”.
The UPND yesterday refused to respond to the NDC’s defacto leader’s broadside.
Major Kachingwe said in an interview UPND leader Hakainde Hichilema was an “introvert” who was not willing to work with any other political player.
He said it was not easy for any serious political player to work with Mr Hichilema because he put his personal ambitions above anything else.
Maj Kachingwe said Mr Hichilema would easily sacrifice an alliance for his personal ambitions.
He said Mr Kambwili should realise that he was being used.
Maj Kachingwe said Mr Hichilema only embraced people who could dance to his tune.
“He is a very serious introvert. He does not see beyond himself. It is very difficult for him to work with freelancers like Kambwili who have freedom of association and interaction. He wants people who can stick to what he says,” Maj Kachingwe said.
And Patriotic Front media director Sunday Chanda says the alliance is a union founded on error and destined for a horrendous ending.
Mr Chanda said the PF had been vindicated for predicting that the alliance was nothing and members were meant to be used by Mr Hichilema.
“Few skeptics questioned our sentiments because they thought our understanding of the opposition was limited,” he said.
“Where are my brothers Elias Chipimo, Sean Tembo and Chishimba Kambwili? Where are other stray tag-alongs? There is confusion in the alliance arising out of many factors, but greed, inflated ego and selfish ambitions lie at the heart of these dynamics,” Mr Chanda said.
“Kambwili may cry and moan that he met [UPND] national chairperson Mutale Nalumango and agreed to support each other in Katuba and Lubwa. Mr Hichilema believes that he duped them over the Roan by-election.”
Ms Nalumango yesterday said she would not respond to Mr Kambwili’s complaints about her party’s decision to adopt a candidate ahead of the Lubwa Ward by-election in Kitwe.
She said she would remain mute on Mr Kambwili’s remarks.Mr Kambwili said he had met with Mr Hichilema and Ms Nalumango and they had agreed to support each other in Lubwa and Katuba by-elections. He said he was, however, shocked and disappointed that his party’s alliance partner, UPND, had decided to also field a candidate in the ward by-election.