Sunday, December 23, 2012

Luapula MMD deserts Mumba

Luapula MMD deserts Mumba
By Chris Ndhlovu and Godfrey Chikumbi in Mansa
Sun 23 Dec. 2012, 14:30 CAT

THE entire MMD provincial executive in Luapula Province has defected to the PF and has questioned the legitimacy of party president Nevers Mumba holding the top position. But the former ruling party's vice-president for politics Michael Kaingu downplayed the move, saying the resignation is part of the party's self-cleansing process.

Leading the defectors, MMD provincial chairman Emmanuel Chungu, who was flanked by party chairperson for health Lumba Kalumba, said they had decided to leave the former ruling party because of the unconstitutional conduct of the top leadership.

He said the issues surrounding the legitimacy of Mumba's presidency needed a thorough investigation because the Registrar of Societies had records that he was holding a duo membership as he was still the president of the Reform Party.

Chungu also said the removal of party national secretary Major Richard Kachingwe from office was unconstitutional and calls by senior members of the party to convene a meeting to resolve the matter have been falling on deaf ears.

He vowed to ensure that all the MMD structures in the province were destroyed because Mumba got his leadership position by fluke.
Chungu said the influx of MMD defectors into the PF was not meant to displace the old members in their positions but to support them.

Among others who have defected include provincial spokesperson Wisdom Mpelembe, provincial chairlady Fostina Chola, youth chairperson Benjamin Kabumba, former Chipili member of parliament in the MMD government Jason Mfula, district youth chairperson Chongo Bwafwano and losing candidate Mansa Central parliamentary seat on the MMD ticket Dr Kennedy Chilufya.

Vice-President Guy Scott, who received the defectors in Mansa yesterday, said the defections were a fruition of serious reflection on the performance of the PF for the period it has been in power.

And PF provincial chairman Kennedy Sakeni said the defections from MMD into the PF were a good Christmas present to the party.

Sakeni, who is also information and broadcasting minister, said more membership translated into more support for the party in the province.

But Kaingu has cautioned the PF to be wary of opposition members who were joining the party because some of them had court cases.

Reacting to the resignation of the entire Luapula provincial executive yesterday, Kaingu said he was not surprised that such a thing was happening.

He said the resignations of the party executive members in Luapula was good for the MMD to cleanse itself of those who were not genuine.

Kaingu said the MMD needed to rid itself of members whose loyalty was with PF.

"The MMD suffered heavy defeats in Luapula during last year's elections because of those people who have left to join the PF," he said.

Kaingu said his party was not shaken in any way because there were some genuine MMD members who had remained in Luapula.

He said that his party would be sending a team to Luapula to reconstitute the provincial executive committee.

Kaingu further claimed that some opposition members who were ditching their parties to join the ruling PF were appearing in court for various cases.

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