MMD members divided over Kaingu’s loss of position

Michael Kaingu, Brian Chituwo
Michael Kaingu, Brian Chituwo

MMD Copperbelt Province chairperson Joseph Zulu has condemned the decision by the party’s National Executive Committee (NEC) to strip its two vice-presidents and three other senior members of their positions.
But another MMD member on the Copperbelt Province, Alex Mubanga, has appealed to Dr Kaingu to either repent or leave the party, failure to which the grass roots will start calling for his expulsion.

Mr Zulu said in a telephone interview from Ndola yesterday that he was “personally” saddened with NEC’s decision.
On Saturday, the party stripped Dr Kaingu and vice-president for administration Brian Chituwo of their positions.
Others dropped from the party hierarchy are party spokesperson Dora Siliya, chairperson for tourism Lucky Mulusa and national youth secretary Tobias Kafumukache.
The group has been spearheading calls for the removal of MMD president Nevers Mumba for allegedly failing to steer the party to growth.
Mr Zulu did not attend the NEC meeting because he was out of the country but feels the party’s decision was too harsh.
“It is not pleasing that NEC had to reach that decision. In my opinion, we needed to heal the wounds but in this case, the wounds will take long to heal,” he said.
Mr Zulu says that the two factions in the MMD should have reconciled because politics is a game of numbers.
“This is a very sad situation. It was not a good decision at all,” he said.
Eastern province MMD chairman Alexander Miti, who attended the NEC meeting that decided to strip the five of their positions, said had the group co-operated, things would not have ended the way they did.
Mr Miti said it is sad that the five were stripped of their positions.
“I was part of that meeting which decided to remove them from NEC. It was not a pleasant decision at all because these are very senior members of the party. That is why we didn’t even dare think of expelling them,” he said via phone from Chipata.
Mr Miti said expulsion of the group should not at all be entertained because the MMD needs them.
He said the people of Eastern Province are not angry with NEC’s decision but are merely anxious to know what exactly happened.
Mr Miti said MMD stands a better chance to bounce back in power than any political party because it is a party with a national character.
Former Copperbelt chairman Joseph Chilambwe described the incident as “sad”.
Speaking in an interview from Ndola yesterday, Mr Mubanga, commonly known as Shi Mpundu pa Nkoloko, said the MMD in the province would want Dr Kaingu and others to repent but if they do not, then they should resign from the party.
He said the decision taken by the party leadership to strip the five of their positions was the right one.
The five were expelled from the NEC last week for alleged misconduct.
Mr Mubanga said Dr Kaingu and the four others must leave Dr Mumba to perform his duties as party president independently and without any interference.
“We do not want to see our president being dragged to police and courts,” he said.

Zambia Daily Mail