I sacrificed for PF; now I’m sacrificed by PF – Christopher Kalenge

OS

By Steve Mark Misori in Homa Bay County, Kenya
Political parties offer the rare opportunity to all its aggressive lieutenants with the intention of checking their political rivals.

Such leaders are believed to understand the objective, vision and manifesto of the party.

All the contestants from the ruling party usually dine and wine with the high and mighty since it is understandable that their participation in the political race contributes immensely to the ultimate win of the party.

Victory of the Party President at national level is a huge milestone such that losing parliamentary candidates and Ward candidates even forget about their own political gamble and celebrate the presidential win.

This is because it is presumed that winning the Republican Presidency comes with goodies to those who stand by the party.

The story is different in Lufwanyama constituency where President Edgar Lungu appears to have forgotten some of its party’s luminaries who sacrificed for the ruling party.

Christopher Kalenge sold his house in prime area of Kitwe in Riverside to ensure that PF is well established in Lufwanyama.

But now despite his sacrifice, Mr Kalenge feels to be disgusted by the open neglect that has been part of his curriculum vitae.

Despite securing a moral and political standing for the party, he has been left in the political cold and wonders whatever wrong he did to PF and by extension to President Edgar Lungu.

Mr Kalenge who is one of the PF founder members in Lufwanyama has never understood the reason behind his exclusion by the ruling party.

In 2007, Mr Kalenge was a member of a PF committee that was charged with the responsibility of raising funds. He held this position until 2011.

Now he regrets selling his house in Riverside to help the ruling party win, this is because none of the leaders including the President Lungu wants to listen to him.

It is the embarrassment that he has undergone that has completely sent him into fear and political oblivion.

Mr Kalenge, who holds a Diploma in Theology and Biblical Studies from Fiwale Hill Bible College, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology, contested a parliamentary seat in Lufwanyama constituency in the year 2011 but lost.

Despite losing the seat, he continued charting the course of PF and remained optimistic that should an opportunity be available, he would serve his constituents and even the nation at large.

He remained optimistic that the head of state will one day wake up and reward his efforts in marketing the ruling party.

Shockingly, his political friends such as Stardy Mwale, Patrick Mwanawasa and Keith Maila were lucky enough to get jobs from the government.

Mr Mwale who lost in Masaiti on a PF ticket is today Defence Permanent Secretary; Patrick Mwanawasa who lost Kafulafuta seat is a Deputy Permanent Secretary in the Eastern province whereas Keith Maila lost in Mpongwe is Mpongwe District Commissioner.

He wonders, “What about me? What have I done to the President? It is truly disgusting.”

In 2014, Mr Kelenge was elected as PF provincial youth secretary, a position he held until 2016 when he was promoted to Province youth secretary.

“In 2018, I resigned from my position but only see my political enemies hit at that I had resigned from the party. How could I resign from a party that I founded and strongly believed in letter and spirit?”

He claims that PF has been hijacked by political brokers.

Mr Kalenge whose political journey began way back in 2008 when the late President Michael Sata was still alive believes the current President will consider him and reward him for always standing with the party.

He says Lufwanyama despite the economic endowment, the district still lags behind in a number of ways.

Mr Kalenge affirms that the support PF party got from the youths in Lufwanyama was attributed to his influence and he traversed the whole constituency pleading with the youth to stand with the party.

Even though he feels politically cheated, he insists that President Edgar Lungu means well for Zambia and the citizens should unite in fighting corruption at all levels of management.

The 39 year-old Lukwesa Secondary School alumnus intends to make a stab at the constituency in 2021 on a PF ticket.

“The current Member of Parliament Leonard Fungulwe has failed Lufwanyama residents terribly,” he says.

For now, it is a wait and see scenario if PF under the stewardship of the President Lungu will listen to the cry of the former Lufwanyama PF aspirant and reward him.

 

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