OPINION: Hichilema And His Troubled Political Support System

You will know them by their fruits is an age-old adage that cuts across various spectrums of life. Well, we can choose to reflect on this across various spectrums of our lives. But with Zambians deeply immersed in discourse on elections and the current voter registration exercise going on, we are persuaded to zero in on one of the leading players in the looming presidential contest.

Five time losing presidential candidate Hakainde Hichilema has remained a constant in the opposition United Party for National Development (UPND) equation since his chaotic ascendancy to the party presidency mired in tribal sentiment in 2006. Almost everything else has changed except the Hichilema presidency in UPND. He has survived a dozen of vice presidents that have all left in frustration after failing to work with him. We are tempted to mention a few here: Patrick Chisanga, Richard Kapita, Dr Canisius Banda, Geoffrey Bwalya Mwamba. We could add here the departure of long-time vice presidents Sakwiba Sikota and Bob Sichinga whose exit was connected to the ascendancy of Hichilema to the UPND presidency. In all this, we ask, “why have all these people left? Why has it been so hard for other progressive Zambians to work with Hichilema?” Others have previously sacrificed their dignity and integrity to just hang around Hichilema. The casualty list has personalities like Charles Milupi, Sean Tembo, and Felix Mutati who have since moved on.

It appears that the phobia for competition and tribal badges has left the UPND vice presidency vacant since the last occupant left over a year ago. Others around Hichilema are relegated to mere praise singers. Could all these proven patriots have been wrong to desert Hichilema and he alone is always right? Is Hichilema equals to UPND and vice versa? Why is the question of a UPND convention often swept under the carpet each time it is raised? These are legitimate questions that must be asked to the UPND leadership as they seek to govern this country.

We hope the UPND leadership can provide answers as we promote healthy discourse ahead of the highly anticipated 2021 general elections.


  1. Black machende

    Now what is the meaning of this article how can a reporter can be proudly partsan like this shame on you no matter what this time we are voting for hh

    • KK

      This time we are voting for HH. This sounds like someone trying to sound realistic. But bwana, all along you have been voting for HH. So this time may not change anything.

      • Patriot

        Very true.. voting for HH is not a problem. The problem is that the guy keeps losing

  2. 2yk

    It is company a o there is no conversation

  3. Wise

    Even if people are going to vote for him he LL not going to finish 5 years will kick him out 😀😀

    • KC


  4. Man k

    I think how stop reading your articles this hatred

    • akah

      Yes have to change Too much of one party brings boldom for HH zoona

  5. The master mind

    guys don’t u know dat 2b Alon it’s better dan 2b with bad frds bcz me wht i know is dat it’s the one how is on above or the most high how gives the readership and is the 1 how can provide good vice president ..

  6. Koswe

    The reporter is telling you how poor is the leadership of hakainde next year he will be whitewashed that will be the end of him

  7. kelvin D Mulanga

    @ Black Machende, the write has simply put it plainly. where is the partisanship here. Those are just facts. this is one reason why most people cannot engage in a meaningful dialogue because the moment one brings a point home people start closing the doors and exhibit high level partisanship.
    1. Fact Hichilema was not anywhere in the ranks of the UPDN when Underson Mazoka died.
    2. Sakwiba Sikota was one of the veeps
    3. It was selt out that “only a Tonga should lead the UPND political party”
    4. Sice his ascendance or coronation to UPND, HH has lost presidential elections 5 times.
    5. Several vice presidents have left the party citing various reasons related to HH’s leadership character
    6. To date he has no vice, I stand to be corrected.
    7. With the history of facts highlighted in the article one can intelligently guess that HH has more than a mount kilimanjaro to climb to win the presidency. if this article cannot bring home some sense of un comfort in the UPND camp that might explain why a sixth loss by HH might come as a suprise to some. The aricle does not tell anyone not to vote for HH, everyone has a write to vote for their candidate of choice.

    • Patriot

      Very true.. voting for HH is not a problem. The problem is that the guy keeps losing

  8. SOS

    We need people with cash not the way ecl was no wonder he is stealing heavily.

  9. 2yk

    This party has brain shakers Put jack as VIP or Conny.

  10. Sosa

    This time around he gonna make it without fail and you ba zambia reports you shall have your media crossed.

  11. Håkon Spigseth

    It seems Zambia Reports is no longer neutral, but as it used to be. The Has there been a change of Editor in Chief?

  12. Håkon Spigseth

    It seems Zambia Reports is no longer neutral, but as it used to be. The Has there been a change of Editor in Chief?

    • wise2

      What about Zambian Watchdog the UPND Vuvuzela is neutral?

  13. Pharaoh

    To my understanding, the writer has articulated the issue nicely. At some point,he’s every much sympathetic and helping some one out there to identify reasons as to why or the inputs for Mr Man to archive his dreams of presidency. It doesn’t however mean well to speak the opposite the way you see or evaluates things. It takes some body abit of time for a desired, accuracy and reasonable decision. Am indeed seeing something lucking with the entire opposition to assume the presidency in 2021 because of the anxiety and selfish motives other than of the interest of our country.In 2021 one will agree with my words…. I see the way and the nature of the political environment at present. Unless other wise.

    • Pharaoh

      Not concussive at present

      • JMS

        To answer Kelvin D mulenga and pharaoh is by using education and wisdom collects all fevour of the lord and it takes very very wise person to know his mission by God has good channels which doesn’t allow hypocrites practicing hypocrisy in his house or cabinet, were is Ananias,and some grass eaters. And when you see or hear of one regrouping the previous regime which was coorupt is the indication of the reintroduction of malpractice which leads to suffering we are seeing, but its being seen by innocent clever people selected to be wise enough to act on behalf of the majority. From all these candidates,sikita wina, GBM and the others whom have you seen oposing such primitive ideas like votting of inmates? Non beacause God’ s people will be imposed nomatter how loud speakers yell in their ears 👂. RABISH.DEVILS AREN’T ASHAMED.

  14. Tikambepo

    HH’S time has come,this time around it’s forward,forward,forward again and again forward and no one is gonna stop him from being president.

  15. Jms

    It is understood that it takes many to betray and deny a reasonable person and the results are already in the bible were Peter,judus even pharaoh himself was looking for him while piilot refused to let him due to hypocrites, just look how a person HH is, a gentle true Zambian.

  16. niso Kodibba

    How many Veeps did mwanawasa change when he was a Republican president.. Mind u to be vice doesn’t mean outomaticaly u are the next President. Rules u obey if u don’t better u go form u own party.I salute hh he knows how to displine his followers .that’s why the party is strong up to now.come 2021 he will make a balanced and good cabinet which will develop Zambia.

  17. Jms

    People who think are matured but not and do things visevesa but just speak Engilish but not English are very stubborn. And their fould of bringing hunger, uneducated people,cueos and so on pretending not practicing tribalism,hate etc and can ask you by a bribe tactics buying who even is seen to be stupid enough.

  18. Jms

    Maybe I may ask Easterners why they can’t accept education because their demons are sticking on non education philosophy whereby now they are faced with high number of pregnancies due to uneducated area,too much defilements due to most men have no job but remain with kids,too much of uneducated people are seen committing crimes thats why inmates are allowed to vote due to unpopular,a criminal will be seen brainstorming with a burden on top of being innocent extra excetra.

  19. Jms

    I’m amazed and astonished to know that we have been let down by these so called reasonable persons such as sakwiba sikita Richard kapita and these others named who support the inmates to have the rights which has been stolen from the laws of Zambia without realizing that God made culprits to refurain from criminality and may be separated from the society until the repeat but through their repentance some of the human rights such as votting shouldn’t be given upon. Now people usually know of the 3 wise men from the east listen and understand good, those 3 pf who rejected bill 10 for sure have a big heart for mother Zambia. And for sure to refrain from shame the conclusion was that they were ommited but in reality they didn’t vote . Nomatter how you build God’s house without refraining from bad behaviours hell is waiting for you, with this simble ✋✋✋✋✋ may your judgement go far as plocaimed by the wishes of those who think and believe in real development.

  20. Cosmas Moonga

    Insults targeted at Pf members and the head of state and the first lady from you Upnd should be çondemned. HH where are you I need your comment on these insults from your partty to them Chikala no kushana pa bed malumbo.Talk to us badala

  21. JMS

    To be realistic each person will reap what he or she sows. We should be asking our selves why certain situations occur and why they never happened before the way things are happening today, what went wrong, how ,who was involved, what angle did he attack or being attacked, before the attack how was his state happy or sad. All these makes the state on how one could react,so biblically we shouldn’t react to conclude unfairly but should sit down and point out what brought that shame. The most realistic state is love 😘 were love is cosmos moonga couldn’t have said the way he has narrated his story but I can’t blame him because were love is hate should be very far away and peace should prevail,b. Each one of us should start by creating love to the other then love will be in every heart 💓 of each Zambian.

  22. Jms

    In realistic we shouldn’t blame the leader, party or colour but we should blame the manifesto or embress it, what most people are doing is following in darkness while complaining at the same time, thats why we see deffector, which means these people don’t decide for themselves but needs a strong motivator to sharpen their status. Thats why I edge all Zambians to think twice because its God who gives strength but it needs sucriface for you to have that otherwise fear toments their is no faith and were their is no faith their Isn’t hope. Lets stick together us one Zambia one Nation.

  23. Jms

    As the headline appears troubled political support system, its visevesa instead of these outgoing persons to support him,its the party and him having that strategy of supporting the nation if it has been a personal support I’m afraid not. We should understand that this is a national support nothing else. A good person or individual should realise supporting a party arcoding to its manifesto otherwise self brainstorming isn’t maintained by that individual and self reasoning maybe static unless a proper manifesto which will impact knowledge in these individuals,now how? Its just through proper education given may help whereby education must have a stand supported by a good manifesto which will have a brilliant manifesting structure.

  24. Kmi

    Let us discuss the issue here (convention) this is a formal large asembly o r a large meeting for what purpose, benefit and does it require a possibility whereby a stranger can question why not having a convention? How is ressiposible for the meeting, is it possible for the meeting to take place if everything is set through innocent decisions made by so called supernatural VIPs who don’t believe in wasting resources etc. Zambians fill free by recognising your fredom obtained by our fathers and let their strangle be meaningful through the right decision we make by allowing prosperity occur through proper agreement amongst our selves in harmony not in messery for our fathers’s sprit to be maintained in our lives.

  25. JMS

    Yes through working with someone needs to be realistic, potential, truthful, a brilliant brainstormer to national issues etc, not a fake follower like GBM, a non brainstormer like sikota etc. A person whose ageda is to help and willing to develop the nation through good management which will see the nation progress in every department needed and someone who understands the manifesto, if a person creats his own party contrary or opposite his previous one then he never knew why he entered the party and this is a very big problem concerning the mentality of his mind and I edge all useless reports who report not knowing the out come because you will end up embarrassing cowards, and being stupid isn’t an insult but have just gone wide in your thinking capacity so it means you should return your thinking capacity or think twice.

    • Patriot

      You’re very right JMS… stupid is not an insult, but maybe a state of mind where you fail to understand the broader picture of what others are saying and you limit yourself to your under developed scope of reasoning. That is stupidity bordering on insenity…we agreed stupid is not an insult

  26. The governor

    I have already made my choice to vote for upnd no matter what!!!

  27. JMS

    Its unfortunate and Icridible how the acquiring of these voters cards will be obtained because some compounds like Linda just here in Lusaka haven’t yet started and some compounds although have started but just acquiring one is a tag of war. According to the amount of people acquiring voters cards should have received 7 to 8000 people but I think ignorance has supussed innocence and faithfulness. May God break this insanity.

  28. Quan Sparta

    Well well what a tribalist the guy who wrote the article is…Zambia doesn’t need people with such caliber…. What shame !!!!

  29. Skylövër

    Time waster

  30. Tikambeko

    Whether you like it or not HH will win

  31. Ba zed


  32. Patriot

    Very true.. voting for HH is not a problem. The problem is that the guy keeps losing. The problem could be HH himself.if you look at all his former VPs you’ll see that they were all handpicked from outside UPND.Are there no capable individuals within the party who can handle that position?Why sideline people who have worked tirelessly to put the party where it is today for people who don’t even understand the party structure.Is it done that way to frustrate long time members?Or is it because HH doesn’t trust anyone of them?Or is it because he wants people to believe UPND is not tribal hence his hand-picking of VPs from other regions?Or is it because he’s scared to go for a convention in case it turns out that all the top positions end up being scooped by people from the same region, exposing the true colors of the party?Or he’s scared of what the convention is going to expose, most likely a split.. And Why doesn’t he have a VP since the departure of GBM? Are his PMs not good enough for the position?Or maybe he fears a VP from within the party will be a threat to his throne.Well, whatever his reasoning,he should give a chance to those who feel they can handle that position by letting them have a go for it by contesting in an election within the party.It’d be very interesting to see which of the tough talking MPs would carry the day.Maybe then people will have a reason to vote UPND into power

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