Zambians should be sympathetic with the circumstances that the MMD and its leader Nevers Mumba find themselves in after losing power in an election, says MMD party national youth secretary Bowman Lusambo.
Mr Lusambo said the party had suffered a humiliating loss at a general election and a lot of people in the party were confused and that the amount of tribulations that Dr Mumba had faced in his short stay at the helm of the MMD could not be compared to any other politician in the history of Zambia.
He was responding to calls from party officials in Eastern Province who demanded that Dr Mumba must step down to save the former ruling party from total collapse.
Mr Lusambo said all suspended party members should stop using the name of the party in their desperate activities to remain relevant in politics. “We wish to make it clear to all MMD members including those still fighting Dr Mumba that the youths of the party are ready to defend him and the constitution of the MMD, and we will not allow disgruntled politicians with no value to the party to derail Dr Mumba’s plans for the MMD,” he said. Mr Lusambo said the expelled MMD MPs and members should instead join other political parties if the MMD was unattractive, instead of rushing to the courts of law.
“It is public knowledge that PF candidate Edgar Lungu and UPND candidate Hakainde Hichilema both used MMD structures in our strongholds,” he said.
He maintained that Dr Mumba’s mandate runs up to 2017 and that he would renew his mandate beyond 2017 because of the courageous leadership he was providing to the party. Mr Lusambo said Dr Mumba was a popular politician in the MMD as it could be seen by the landslide victory he attained at the last convention. He ordered the party members to stop issuing statements that could fuel tension in the party.
MMD president Nevers Mumba should not impose himself on former ruling party even after being rejected by the majority members of the party, Copperbelt MMD provincial Youth Information and Publicity Secretary James Phiri has said.
Mr Phiri said Dr Mumba has been rejected by the majority of the MMD members and so he should not try to create confusion in the former ruling party by expelling MPs who did not support his candidature in the January 20 presidential election. He said in an interview in Kitwe yesterday that, instead of expelling MMD MPs who did not support him, Dr Mumba should resign from the former ruling party to pave way for genuine party reorganisation.
“Dr Mumba thought he was a strong and popular candidate, but he lost miserably in the Presidential by-election. After that miserable loss, I expected him to be humble and resign from the position of party president, but he wants to create confusion in the party by expelling MPs who did not support him. “Those MPs did not support him because they did not believe in his leadership and they knew he was not a popular candidate,” Mr Phiri said. He said youths in the area had been forced to come out against Dr Mumba because his leadership style of flexing muscles to prove that he was in charge of MMD was not in the interest of the former ruling party.