MMD national secretary Mwansa Mbulakulima says he is ready for a fight with Nevers Mumba and maintains that the party at its January 30 national executive committee meeting resolved to unconditionally form an alliance with the PF.
And Mumba’s spokesperson, Raphael Nakacinda, has defected to the Felix Mutati MMD faction that is demanding for a party convention ahead of the general elections.
Mumba, the MMD president, in a letter dated February 2, asked Mbulakulima to confirm whether his statement in the media that the former ruling party had resolved at its January 30 NEC meeting to unconditionally go into an alliance with the PF was correctly attributed.
“I write to ascertain as to whether the statement attributed to you in the media on February 1, 2016 that the MMD had resolved to back the PF unconditionally was correctly attributed to you and the media did not misquote you. Can you please respond in order to ascertain the next course of action,” Mumba’s letter to Mbulakulima read.
Mumba said the NEC meeting did not resolve to “unconditionally back the PF” but that it had tasked him to meet President Edgar Lungu to agree on the terms of an alliance.
But Mbulakulima told journalists in Lusaka on Tuesday that he was disappointed with Mumba’s decision to write him a letter over his statement.
“I still insist that the statement I gave to the media is a true reflection of MMD members who attended that NEC meeting. Mumba would have done Zambians a favour by stating which side he is on, alliance with the PF or the UPND?” Mbulakulima asked.
He said Mumba should not forget that he (Mbulakulima) was one of three members of parliament that had helped to hold the MMD together.
“I am not bragging; it’s a fact which Zambians know that if there are three or so MPs who held MMD together, I am one of them. He (Mumba) is being insensitive and insincere by writing such a letter to me. Let me remind Mumba that ‘you cannot quarrel with everyone’. Is he the only one who is always right? Was Major [Richard] Kachingwe wrong? Was Dr Brian Chituwo wrong? Were Kapembwa Simbao, Catherine Namugala and Muhabi Lungu wrong? I don’t think so!” Mbulakulima said.
He said he was ready for a fight with Mumba.
“I can see that he has taken his fight to me and so I am waiting for his next action [that] he has promised. I have responded to his letter, which I took time to study,” said Mbulakulima.
And MMD sources have disclosed that Nakacinda dumped Mumba few weeks ago and is now working with Mutati.
“Even his own spokesperson, Nakacinda, where is he today? He is working with Mutati. He knows that the party needs to go to a convention, but since Mumba is forcing matters, he (Nakacinda) has dumped him. It only shows that the party membership has lost confidence in him,” sources said.
The sources said Mumba made the announcement that he is enjoying a cordial relationship with Rupiah Banda so that he could get some sympathy from the State and stop Mutati from taking over.
“Not long ago, Mumba said Banda had selfish motives and was confusing the party, but after seeing that genuine MMD members are now mobilising behind Mutati to rescue the party from being handed over to the PF for selfish reasons, he has now changed and is saying ‘Banda and I enjoy cordial relations’; he is afraid and he wants the PF to help him because he is alone now.”
When contacted, Nakacinda said he will comment at an appropriate time, but confirmed that he was not siding with Mumba while denying that he was not siding with Mutati neither.
“I don’t think there is a necessity for us to start classifying people in groups or camps, it will be very unfortunate if that is there. I don’t think at this particular stage I would want to comment on those issues, because there are a lot of insinuations and childishness around issues that are supposed to be discussed from the point of view of the institutional arrangement of MMD,” said Nakacinda. “For now, just excuse me, I will not be able to deal with these elections because we are all applying ourselves to what people are talking about, a decision was made by NEC, people have been raising concerns in terms of the constitutional provisions and so on.”