By AARON CHIYANZO
UPND yesterday suffered a shock after its preferred candidate in the forthcoming Kasenengwa parliamentary by-election, Faustin Banda, failed to file in his nomination as his family had stopped him from contesting.
Dr Banda told the Daily Nation in an exclusive interview that he had bowed to family pressure not to contest but maintained that he was still UPND.
“I have not defected and am still UPND, but I listened to my family who advised me not to contest the by-elections,” Dr Banda said. In a telephone interview, Dr Banda also dispelled assertions that he had run away with campaign money, stating that’ “I was given fuel money (K2,000) for a Pajero from Lusaka to Chipata and I signed for this. Beyond that, I am not aware and I challenge anyone with evidence to the contrary to produce it.” An audio reportedly released by the UPND media team, suggested that Dr Banda had run away with campaign funds and would be reported to police.
Family sources laughed off the suggestion, saying the K2,000 was there with the 200 pieces of chitenges and the UPND were free to go and collect the items.
Dr Banda revealed that his family was so opposed to him contesting that his sister, based in the United Kingdom, travelled just to come and plead with him not to go ahead.
He also said he was not desperate for a job and rubbished suggestions that he had been promised a job.
Inside sources also told Daily Nation that the family had no hope of UPND winning the by-election slated for September 6, 2018 and were opposed to Dr Banda’s involvement in politics.
The source said that Dr Banda’s family had given him an ultimatum to either contest and be disowned or to continue with his charity work. The source said that Dr Banda was at home in Chuldleigh in Lusaka at the time when he was supposed to file in his nomination.