……as Kalimbwe withdraws support from President Hichilema
In a striking turn of events, Zambia's political landscape has been shaken by the news of a significant rift between President Hakainde Hichilema and his once staunch supporter, Joseph Kalimbwe.
In a revealing statement, Kalimbwe announced his decision to cease his unwavering support for President Hichilema, marking a dramatic shift in their political alliance.
"Friends, we have been offline to recharge, consult, and energize. Due to recent events and our collective failures as a unit to return to the masses to inspire and put into confidence a nation living in tough times, we would like to state that we are putting on hold our support, which we have shown endlessly here for the 7th Zambian President (Hakainde Hichilema)," Kalimbwe declared, signalling a deepening crisis within the Zambian political realm.
A source close to the situation disclosed that Kalimbwe's patience was wearing thin with President Hichilema's inability to steer the country towards a more prosperous path.
"Kalimbwe had high hopes for significant changes under President Hichilema's leadership. His disillusionment stems from unmet expectations of a pivotal role in government, despite his fervent defence and support for the President," the source explained.
Further intensifying the political drama, the source revealed that Kalimbwe was likely to join forces with Freddy Mbembe's Socialist Party of Zambia (SPZ).
Rumours are rife that Kalimbwe has been offered the position of Vice President within SPZ, a move that could significantly alter Zambia's political dynamics.
Political analyst Nobleman Runyanga said that the rift between Kalimbwe and President Hichilema was reflective of a broader sentiment among Zambians, many of whom are reportedly losing patience with President Hichilema.
"His tenure so far has been marred with unfulfilled promises of positive development, stirring discontent among the populace. Adding to the growing dissatisfaction is the administration's clampdown on dissenting voices, which is increasingly being viewed as a suppression of democratic freedoms,” said Runyanga.
As this political saga unfolds, Zambia finds itself at a crossroads, with the potential for significant shifts in the nation's political alliances and public sentiment.
The fallout between Kalimbwe and President Hichilema not only highlights the challenges within the current administration but also underscores the fluid nature of political loyalty and the ever-changing landscape of political alliances in Zambia.