Opposition MMD in Northern Province has castigated those calling for an early convention to oust president Nevers Mumba saying there was no need for a new leader in the party.
Northern Province MMD chairman Steven Mukuka said calls for an early convention were not welcome as the MMD had a dully elected leadership including the party’s president.
He said claims that the former ruling party was dying were being made to create anxiety among members and should not be entertained.
“Calls by the party vice presidents for administration Dr Brian Chituwo and politics Dr Michael Kaingu, Dora Siliya and other senior members of the party to go for an early convention to oust Dr Mumba are not welcome.
“Mumba is a duly elected leader of the party and should be allowed to lead the party for the full 5 year term as prescribed by the party constitution,” he said.
Meanwhilen Southern African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (SACCORD) executive director Boniface Chembe says the continued infighting in the former ruling MMD has the potential to weaken the party.
Chembe said what was happening in MMD only served to reduce the checks and balances it was supposed to offer to the PF government.
“There is need for MMD to stop the different factions in the party from issuing isolated press statements that seek to denounce each other,” Chembe said.
Chembe said the issue of isolated press conferences eroded public confidence in MMD as an alternative government.
“MMD is in a position to forge ahead with unity so that it is be able to contest local government, general and by-elections,” he said.
Chembe said SACCORD believed that the factions within the MMD needed to be receptive, tolerant and exhibit the highest level of coexistence.
“MMD needs to ensure that they act in the interest of the party through dialogue so that they can avoid ironing out their differences in public,
“Their meetings should be held behind closed doors to help maintain unity, integrity and ultimately the confidence of Zambians so that they can continue being considered as a party that could once again form government,” Chembe said.
He said that in order for the MMD to have unity of purpose, there was need for them to reach a consensus in whatever they did.
“We want to appeal to all sound members of the party to help play a constructive role by resolving differences among different factions so that the party can remain focused,” he said.
“We believe that the interest of senior members and founders of the party is to see that MMD is united and relevant to the dispensation of democracy in Zambia,” he said.
And Foundation for Democratic Process (FODEP) executive director McDonald Chipenzi has described the factions in MMD as unfortunate.
“It is unfortunate for MMD to be having such factions especially that it is one of the biggest political parties in Zambia,” said Chipenzi.
Chipenzi said the continued in-fight in MMD was not helping the party and the country considering that it was supposed to be providing checks and balances to the executive.
“MMD should stop fighting through the media and seek to find lasting solutions to their problems as soon as possible,” Chipenzi said.
Chipenzi said enemies of the MMD will take advantage of the current factions and destabilize the former ruling party.
“It will be sad if MMD dies because we really need a strong opposition which will be able to provide checks and balances to the executive,” he said.