The United Party for National Development (UPND) was formed in December 1998. The Party turns 20 years old in December 2018. Today its desperation has reached an all-time high because time is running out for them to either deliver the country or their soul. The patience of their 20-year-old-financiers have continued to wear thin and thin by the failure of the party to deliver as per their promise despite the financiers’ unwavering financial commitments that resulted in its leaders’ immense wealth which they stand to lose as per deal they signed almost 22 years ago in the run up to infamous privatisation exercise in Zambia. The UPND is fixed between the rock and the hard place as on one hand, Zambians have refused to toll their line while on the other, UPND’s top leadership especially its past and current President’s rented wealth is threatened by its true owners, the mining conglomerate, Anglo-America, which continues to fund Hakainde Hichilema through Brenthurst Foundation in South Africa.
On 25th August 2015, Hichilema, while addressing a rally in Chingola vowed to chase Konkola Copper Mines (KCM) and bring back Anglo-America. See:
Did he say that? Yes he did because his masters asked him to!
That statement was not an innocent one but spoke to everything that UPND and Hichilema are all about – fronts of white capital with interests in Zambia’s mineral wealth!
How it all began:
The former illegitimate mining corporation that lost its mining rights to the Zambian government in 1970 has never rested. In the wake of multi-party democracy, this corporation saw privatisation as an opportunity to regain its mineral rights across the country. To this effect, it fronted its ‘men’ both in government and in the private sector to champion their cause. Hichilema himself was one of the fronts of the foreign interest that resulted in him landing a top position as Lead in the Sale of Subsidiary assets while late Anderson Mazoka, a former employee of the Anglo-American Corporation would lobby from within the Party as a member of the MMD at the time. This ‘well calculated’ ploy gave rise to the inflow of cash to individuals involved most of which would be used to buy off some of the strategic government enterprises that would later leave many Zambians out of employment and thrown into untold destitution. Hichilema himself benefitted immensely from this transaction landing him and his birds of the feathers, strategic businesses.
I can borrow from the words of former Zambia Privatisation Agency Director, Mr. James Matale who in an interview with Bivan Saluseki on the Sunday 16th of December 2007, described privatisation as an act of unprecedented vandalism. Yes, it was, and what is even worse, the vandals would return to claim to be messiahs to the very people they wantonly condemned into misery. How cheek!
Hichilema along with his colleagues sold their souls to the powerful business interests and in the process lined up to take pot luck of this country’s enterprises and assets as though they were goods falling from the back of a delivery truck.
This ploy would later fail to deliver results to their ‘masters’, all thanks to the street savvy of the Fredrick Chiluba’s government. The government refused to offer some fake corporation established to procure the entire mining conglomerate to the annoyance of monopoly capital that had already invested heavily through the greedy Zambians both in the then MMD government as well as in the privatisation process. In 1998 when the privatisation of the mines was almost concluded, the schemers had to engage into plan B. This gave rise to the birth of the UPND in December of the same year 1998 with Mazoka as its leader and with an even heavy flow of cash from the foreign corporation for party mobilisation. They pinned their hopes on the disastrous outcomes of a poorly implemented privatisation to muzzle power and ultimately deliver their promise to their financier. It follows therefore that UPND was never founded on any grounded political ideology other than as a tool for foreign monopoly capital hell bent on recapturing the country’s natural resources especially mineral deposits throughout the country.
Setting in of desperation
In all their schemes, indications have always looked to be in their favour but ending in the opposite. First was the loss with the privatisation, then the election in 2001 to Levy Patrick Mwanawasa. It is no telling how a party led by a former branch Chairperson of Bauleni Compound could mobilise such huge sums of funds for campaigns if not being bankrolled by the foreign interest for obvious reasons.
The financiers suffered yet another setback with the death of their principal on the 24th of May, 2006 a few months before yet another ‘promising opportunity’ for business interest as elections were fast approaching under which UPND had earned itself a lead place in the UDA Pact seen as a formidable force to unseat the MMD of Levy Mwanawasa.
However, there was a problem, since UPND was not a political party as its members believed it to be, but a well-orchestrated business interest formation operating under the puppet strings of international big business. To retain its interest, the financiers had to bring on board one of its own to take the lead and continue from where Mazoka had left it.
To make it easy for Hichilema’s ascendance, Mazoka’s cousin, Rex Natala on June 6th 2006 would initiate a tribal campaign that would eliminate other eminent and better suited contenders following the, ‘only a tonga must replace Mazoka’ statement. Bad as this open tribalism was, something worse was brewing underneath. Hichilema was to be made leader not only of UPND but of UDA as he was the only near alternative having been a core proponent of the ‘evil genius’ agreement between the UPND and its funders.
Any takeover by another person be it its then Vice President Sakwiba Sikota or its spokesperson Patrick Chisanga whose eligibility was already discounted based on tribe would mean a lost cause for their funders. That is how Hichilema had to move from the boardroom enjoying his wealth gotten from privatisation into the not known arena of politics. There was no way he would refuse his new deployment because he owed his wealth to the UPND financier’s generosity. The rest as you know are multiple losses.
As the UPND approaches 20 years of its existence and over two (2) decades of foreign-based business interest’s consistent financing, patience has totally waned. Hichilema and UPND has failed to deliver any returns on their financier’s investments for such a protracted period. The party, especially its leader, has been given strict conditions to deliver the country to them by any means necessary or lose everything he has benefited since entering into a pact with them. This explains the desperation that Zambians have been subjected to since 2015. Hichilema and his UPND have tried with no success to destabilise the country with the aim of installing himself as President to the pleasure of his funders who he owes his life with no success. This explains such desperate manoeuvres that include but not limited to the following:
- Calling for international suctions on Zambia to stifle the citizen’s livelihood so as to result in an uprising;
- Calling for a bloody uprising by his supporters in September 2006 when he declared that they were now freedom fighters who should engage in a physical fight.
iii. Childishly call on the Zambian military to emulate their Zimbabwean counterparts to take over power from the bonafide Republican President. The period saw a barrage of attention seeking publicity tantrums by HH and his minions in an effort to incite the citizens with no results.
- In his usual cut and paste style, Hichilema has not failed to relate developments elsewhere to the Zambia context. The case in point his copying on the South African developments that resulted to the recall of President Jacob Zuma, with him forcing his members of parliament to initiate an impeachment motion in parliament. The subsequent development is the clandestine efforts to buy his way to victory by paying off members of parliament to vote in favour.
This is albeit the fact that matters raised either rarely relate to the President himself or cannot be admitted in parliament due to their being active in court.
It follows therefore that these desperate acts by Hichilema and UPND are acts of a man in political and economic intensive care unit whose life is dependent on financial life support machine to which his financiers hold the final say as to when it should be switched off.
Hichilema is a troubled man who cannot stomach the imminent loss of his rented wealth that some Zambians have believed he had earned genuinely. Now he is embarking on what Bembas term, ‘tufilile munsenga’, he would rather, see the country burn up in flames than to live to see the day he will fall from grace for all to see how much of a phoney he has been all these years.
I would not be surprised to see some more attempts by Hichilema and UPND to derail the government through more attention seeking antiques.
Zambians should not be surprised, I repeat to hear that Hichilema and UPND is have taken Edgar Lungu or the Patriotic Front party to court all in the aim of wanting to show his discontented funders that he still has some life left in him.
I am calling on all well-meaning Zambians to ignore and dismiss Hichilema’s and UPND’s attention seeking drama with the utmost contempt it deserves.
To all the citizens, I urge you all to remain patriotic to the Country, stand guard to defend it against selfish people who want to deprive you and your children’s children their rightful heritance. We only have one country as such; let us protect it from villains that have hired themselves to the foreign business interests. UPND must be reminded that Zambia is not for auctioning to the highest bidder such as Anglo-America.
Zambians can look to any other political party but not UPND. This is a party that entered into a pact with the ‘devil’ to hand over the country’s wealth in the hands of the monopoly capital.
The author is a scholar and once UPND in 2008. He is based in Sydney, Australia.