Press Statement for immediate release
YOUTHS SHOULD REJECT RUPIAH BANDA
As the nation puts to rest His Excellency Michael Chilufya Sata, we wish to alert the nation that some old and retired politicians are working tirelessly to position themselves for the presidential by election.
We have credible information that former President Rupiah Banda has intensified his efforts to woo support from several stakeholders towards his bid to return to politics.
Mr Banda is on Tuesday evening set to meet several chiefs and other traditional leaders with the intention to convenience them to support is ill intentioned moves to return to active politics.
The Chiefs and traditional leaders who are in Lusaka attending the funeral of late President Sata have been invited to Mr Banda’s residence where they will asked to support his candidature.
It should be stated that Mr Banda has a democratic right to pursue his political interests at an individual or national levels.
But we also firmly believe that Mr Banda’s return to politics is bad for Zambian politics and does not promote the growth of our democracy.
Instead of converging around Mr Banda, well-meaning Zambians should encourage Mr Banda to focus on his role as a statesman and advisor to the nation.
We ask, in whose interest is Mr Banda’s return to politics? Are the Chiefs serving the interests of their subjects by attending Mr Banda’s clandestine meeting?
At the Heroes National Stadium during the requiem mass, it was pleasant to see Mr Banda warmly chatting with Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta. We however wish to advise Mr Banda that he should realize that the region has moved on and the majority of leaders are now young and vibrant.
Mr Banda should take time to consult the young Kenyatta how is father Jomo led the way for young politics in Kenya until his death in 1978.
The fact is Mr Banda abandoned MMD shortly after losing power in 2011 at a time when the MMD needed him most.
The party faced a lot of challenges and its leaders were persecuted and it almost got deregistered but Mr Banda offered little or no help.
As loyal members, our memories are still fresh of the efforts by gallant members such as late Vice President George Kunda who challenged the deregistration process of the MMD in the courts of law. We also remember that as Mr Kunda was running up and down to the High Court, Mr Banda was away enjoying his coffee in Boston as a Guest Lecturer.
If he chooses to return to politics, Mr Banda will have the dishonor of having Robert Mugabe as the only age mate in active politics in the region.
The questions should be answered honestly if we are to reach consensus on whether Mr Banda should be accepted back in mainstream politics.
Moreover, Mr Banda’s return to politics is an exercise in futility because he does not even have a party ticket. MMD currently has a leader in Dr Nevers Sekwila Mumba.
These intentions by Mr Banda and his supporters smacks of greed and self-centeredness because this is the same Mr Banda who went about saying that it was not him who lost in 2011 but that it was the MMD that lost.
So we challenge him to prove his perceived popularity by forming his own political party or reviving the old UNIP.
The year 2014 is a unique opportunity for young Zambians to stand and be counted on the nation’s quest for brand new leadership.
This year Zambia has entered a new Jubilee after 50 years of self-rule. The death of Mr Sata also marks the end of the old generation leadership in Zambia.
Issued by: Bowman Lusambo-MMD National Youth Coordinator