Friday, March 25, 2011

Chitala regrets backing Rupiah

Chitala regrets backing Rupiah
By George Chellah
Fri 25 Mar. 2011, 04:02 CAT

Mbita Chitala says President Rupiah Banda's regime is anchored on tribalism, nepotism and provincialism. And he said he regretted having wrongly assisted the installation of the Banda-UNIP clique in MMD that has betrayed the late Levy Mwanawasa's legacy.

Dr Chitala, a former finance deputy minister, yesterday announced that he would not contest the position of party national secretary at the forthcoming MMD national convention in Kabwe.

“After being persuaded by many MMD members to leave my semi-retirement and contest the position of National Secretary at the next party convention, I regret to say that I will not. As co-founder of the party, I have served the party selflessly for many years in many capacities, including being chief executive of the Presidential campaigns of both the late Mr Mwanawasa and the current President,” Dr Chitala said.

“In the last three years, I have watched with trepidation the degradation of our party from a vibrant progressive and democratic movement to a fatigued, uninspiring and retrogressive movement.”

He also said that the MMD vision and programmes had been changed by an alien clique originally from UNIP, which now dominated the party and wanted to transform and crown the MMD into a second-class UNIP at the next convention.

“After establishing a vibrant and tolerant multi-party dispensation, the MMD vision on which our party has been voted on for the past 20 years, included the following ideals and yearnings:

(1) To provide for a consensually derived Republican Constitution that would stand the test of time.

The Chiluba regime reneged on this and I unsuccessfully took them to court. The current regime has also failed and is happy to continue with token amendments to the One Party Constitution. This is loathed and opposed by many Zambians including the Catholic Church, Christian Council of Zambia, Law Association of Zambia, traditional leaders, workers unions, students and the majority Zambians. This refusal to enact a new multi-party constitution has resulted in our failure to deal with devolution of power which will concurrently address the Barotse question and other issues of good governance such as social rights and 50+1 demands of the people,” Dr Chitala stated.

(2) To ensure there is rule of law, transparency and accountability in government service. The current regime is happy with the rule of man as the interference in our judiciary, abuse of the public media and refusal to enact a Freedom of Information legislation typifies.

(3) To conduct a programme of zero tolerance against corruption and abuse of office. The current regime is hand and glove with grand corruption and abuse of office as shown in the repeal of the abuse of office clause in the Anti-Corruption Act, the events at Zamtel and NAPSA and so on ad infinitum.

(4) To reduce on the over-taxation of our people by ensuring that we institute a price participation scheme on mineral sales that will allow us to fill the gap from reduced PAYE and so on.

The current regime abused their powers and cancelled Mwanawasa's progressive tax regime and re-instated the exploitative Development Agreements and anti-Zambia tax regime that has seen Zambia lose more than $415 million in 2008, more than $700 million in 2009 and continues to lose because of this un-patriotic stance.

Mwanawasa's tax policy could have allowed us to create a sovereign fund that could by now have more than trebled our GDP and allowed us to combat poverty more meaningfully.”

Dr Chitala stated that the MMD vision was also to professionalise the public service, fight all divisive doctrines such as tribalism, nepotism, provincialism, sexism and racism.

“The current regime is anchored on tribalism, nepotism and provincialism as typified by appointments in all government service. To struggle for the unity of Zambia with its citizens enjoying fundamental human rights in a multi-party dispensation that is anchored on tolerance and love for each other. The current regime has revived the UNIP violence we stopped in 1991 as typified by the attack on the PF meeting at Garden House organised by our MMD provincial committee and the violence against even fellow MMD members as was evidenced when our members tried to file in provincial elections in Lusaka and during the renewal of MMD party cards at Mulungushi conference centre in Lusaka recently,” he stated.

Dr Chitala stated that he could no longer associate himself with a leadership that has abandoned the MMD vision and programmes and has regressed 360 degrees to adopt the same policies and practices that the Zambian people sacrificed their lives to overthrow.

“I know that the majority of MMD members are progressive and are gravely saddened at the way these newcomers to our party have usurped power and conducted a coup to remove the true blue MMD members and changed our policies. To those MMD members who will attend the fake convention, ensure that you do not vote for UNIP usurpers who have tarnished the image of our party,” Dr Chitala stated.

“I know you will suffer intimidation and be subjected to bribes and threats as happened during the provincial elections where you were harassed and threatened with all manners of punishment including suspensions. To the other progressive ones who have been marginalised or suspended for daring to announce they would contest positions, it would be foolhardy to even contemplate attending the convention as you may be lynched by the UNIP zealots who have taken over the leadership of our party. It is better you find a party or movement that promises to uphold our MMD ideals.

“As the last Chief Executive of the MMD presidential election campaign, it is with deep regret that I wrongly assisted the installation of the UNIP clique in our MMD that has betrayed Mwanawasa's legacy, as well as all that the MMD stood for. At a personal level, even as I have been in retirement, I have suffered greatly as the clique has blacklisted me. This is but a small thing. History will absolve me. For now, the challenge is to consult and build a people’s coalition to start afresh.”

Labels: , ,


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home