19 January 2013

Zambia: On Copperbelt, MMD Troubled By Divisions

Suspended Copperbelt Chairman of the Movement for Multiparty Democracy (MMD) Joseph Chilambwe is reportedly spearheading division among the ranks of the former ruling party by forming parallel structures in the region.

Chilambwe is influencing other members of the provincial executive committee to ignore their suspension, which was slapped on them for alleged disloyalty to the party.

"We are forming our own parallel structures and offices have already been found because NEC has failed to provide leadership at grassroots level," Chilambwe said. "We won't allow new comers to take over the party because we are the real members of the MMD and we want Catherine Namungala and Major Richard Kachingwe to be re-instated in their positions."

Speaking in a telephone interview from Kitwe, Chilambwe said the MMD on the Copperbelt Province has resolved to form parallel structures in the party because the National Executive Committee (NEC) and party leader Nevers Mumba were not providing the right leadership.

"A total of 10 districts from the province have resolved to form parallel structures and we urge NEC and Dr Mumba to stop suspending members who want a national convention to elect leaders that would take the party forward," he said.

Chilambwe addressed some MMD members at Jubilee lodge in Kitwe where he claimed that the former ruling party under the leadership of Dr. Nevers Mumba was not going anywhere.

"We decided to form parallel structures because we want a national convention where leaders would be elected in a democratic manner and not through provincial conferences as it was for Nevers Mumba," he said.

"As it is now, the MMD cannot win any election but this must change and this change must start with the top leaders which has been suspending and expelling members undemocratically like that," he said.

Chilambwe said all provincial executive committee must ignore recent suspensions in the MMD by establishing parallel structures.

Surprisingly, Chilambwe asked the MMD members to throw their support to the Patriotic Front (PF) government, which he said was on the correct path to develop Zambia.

"All our members must stop insulting President Michael Sata, the PF and the Government," he said.

Efforts to get reaction from Dr Nevers Mumba failed by press time as he was reported to be in a meeting.

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