Monday, June 03, 2013

MMD has no money for by-elections - Chipungu
By Allan Mulenga
Wed 29 May 2013, 14:01 CAT

KENNETH Chipungu says MMD has no money to participate in forthcoming by-elections. In an interview recently, Chipungu, who is chairperson for elections and Rufunsa MMD member of parliament, however said the party was scouting for money to take part in the Chipata Central, Mkushi North, Solwezi East and Kafulafuta by-elections slated for July, 25.

"….there could be some finance problems, but I think along the way, we should be able to overcome those financial problems through our party members; our members of parliament and so on and so forth," he said.

"This is what I have told you that we are looking for money and we are getting somewhere. I am sure sooner or later definitely we will get there, money will be found. It is not just a point of participating, even if resources are difficult, but we are looking for resources and we will go ahead. And I am very positive that resources will be found."

Chipungu said his party was 'fatigued' over the number of by-elections being held in the country.
"This is the first time we have had unprecedented number of by-elections in this country. We have never seen this kind of thing before. And people are fatigued and obviously even political parties themselves they are fatigued," he said. "To be honest with you, yes, we are having difficulties in finances and maybe not only us, including our colleagues in other opposition parties. They have also difficulties in finances, but what do you do? Now, I think we cannot afford not to participate. My view is that if you want to win lotto, you must participate. You cannot expect to win lotto if you are not participating."

Chipungu said the party had received an overwhelming response from members wanting to contest in the forthcoming by-elections.

"We are in the process of identifying those that will stand in various constituencies. I must say that the response is overwhelming. A number of people have been inquiring and very willing to stand. My phone was busy when you were calling me and those are some of the candidates. In short, we are fielding in all the by-elections," said Chipungu.

Recently, Mafinga MMD member of parliament Catherine Namugala said party president Nevers Mumba had no financial capacity to run a big party like MMD.

Earlier, MMD deputy national secretary Chembe Nyangu said his party was bankrupt because its sources of funds had dried.

Nyangu said the financial constraints facing MMD would affect its survival.

Nyangu said monthly contributions from MMD members of parliament were not enough to sustain its operations.

"Our only source is Parliament, where our members contribute. Even for them they have got their own things to do; they have got families to look after. We are also losing members of parliament and each member of parliament we lose, it is loss of income to the party. Even those that will be expelled, it will mean that we will need money for by-elections," said Nyangu.

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