REMARKS BY PRESIDENT NEVERS MUMBA AT MMD LEADERSHIP MEETING IN CHIPATA ON 13TH APRIL 2013.
The significance of this gathering is that with all the assault on our party and its leadership the MMD remains robustly strong across the whole country. Since the loss of the 2011 elections, the Party has been subjected to sustained pressure from our sworn opponents:
(1) Our MPs and Councillors have been targeted as prey by the same consumers who branded us corrupt.
- Our leaders including myself and former President Banda have been harassed arrested and thrown into jail as a way to break the spirit of the Party. The principle of our opponents is to strike the shepherd and the sheep shall be scattered.
- The goal of our opponents is to diminish and dismantle the MMD in order for the country to re-emerge as a one party state.
But we are gathered here today in the country’s MMD strong hold to announce to the nation that MMD shall prevail and shall sound the bells of democracy and freedom for all Zambians.
MMD is strong. It is in every Province. It is not a tribal party nor undemocratic as we represent all regions and we are the custodians of Zambia’s democratic culture. We introduced the ethos of multipartism and we shall stand ready to defend the cause of democracy.
To our sworn opponents, you shall not succeed in your efforts to dismantle the MMD. You shall not succeed in killing our spirits. We shall trust God for strength to defend the God given freedoms of all Zambians. We shall fight to create a fair and free society where every Zambian can enjoy the benefits of being a citizen.
I therefore call upon all members of our party nation wide not to be intimidated, or dismayed. God is a God of justice. He shall always be on the side of truth, fairness, love and the quest for unity amongst us.
The politics of hatred, vindictiveness are slowly going to fade away. Politics of love, tolerance and civility shall soon take root in the Zambian politics.
(A) EASTERN PROVINCE
While our presence as MMD is nation-wide, Eastern Province is the home of the MMD. We are the governing party here in the Eastern Province. The Mayors are MMD and Councils are being run by our party. We must take advantage of this and serve the people of Eastern Province without any intimidation from those in central government. I urge Eastern Province not to change the status quo. Keep MMD as the ruling party in Eastern Province.
(B) NEW HOPE TOUR
This week, I initiated one of the most ambitions projects since I took over office as President of our party. I have chosen to start from Eastern Province, our strong hold to inspect and re-organise our party in preparation for the next general elections. I decided to leave the “press statements” politics in Lusaka and get down to the grassroots where our people are daily facing the realities of lack, pain, disease and hunger. My goal is to build a huge grassroot movement that shall turn the course of this country’s politics.
(C) STATUS OF THE PARTY
(1) Accept that we are no longer in government
(2) Adopt spirit of volunteerism and sacrifice
(3) Understand that the greatest asset MMD has, is its
If we don’t change-we are bound to drown ourselves in a sea of challenges
(D) ELECTIONS AND BY-ELECTIONS
Zambia will continue to vote into office people who are not the natural choice unless we work to level playing field.
The view that ECZ is the creation of the MMD and the PF is doing what MMD did is misguided. The reason why Zambians voted for PF was in the hope that what the people didn’t like about MMD should be left behind and never repeated by the PF. If PF continues to do similar things that made MMD lose power, then they cease to have authority to hold office.
We therefore condemn the involvement of District Commissioners (DC’s) in politics. The DC’S nation-wide have been given a mandate and money by the PF government to be buying Councillors from the MMD at K1,5million per head. Dozens have been bought as you would buy bananas from the market because of poverty amongst our people. This has resulted in unprecedented number of by-elections since independence. All at the expense of the tax payer.
Our decision to hold back from Lukulu West and Kapiri-Mposhi is because we don’t wish to endorse irregularities. The ECZ has no power nor capacity to manage free and fair elections under the PF regime. The ECZ must be given teeth to bite. The ECZ must be independent in order to reduce violence and killing in future elections.
(E) AGRICULTURE POLICY
Zambian families live off agriculture. The MMD back in government will insist on providing the necessary inputs on time to assist small scale farmers produce food for themselves.
The looming hunger in Zambia is due to PF’s mismanagement of the agriculture sector. We wish to advise government to make prior arrangements on how they shall mitigate the looming hunger. Our record in agriculture as MMD is there for all to see.
(F) MMD WAY FORWARD
To unite around the vision of making Zambia better.
Unity, discipline and love amongst ourselves, we should not be used by opponents of our party to fight against each other.
Money should not enslave us.
Leadership at all levels must be checked to ensure that they are totally committed to the NEW HOPE MMD.
(G) PRESIDENTIAL IMMUNITY
Our position as a party is that we do not object subjecting anyone of us including former Presidents to scrutiny of the law but we know that the issue against President Banda is political harassment. We contested the manner in which the Immunity was removed. We believed it was wrong and an indication of the vindictiveness of intention.
I am glad that MMD has been vindicated by the courts who have ruled in favour of the former President for judicial review. Regardless of the justification, I know that we shall be proved right in the long run. This act of removing the Immunity of President Banda has been done in bad faith.
I urge all our members across the country to be strong. To resist the onslaught of our multiplied opponents. For those who agree to be bought by our opponents we bid you farewell, but those whom God has given to this party shall continue in the Party and shall be part of the next government of the NEW MMD. Zambians across the country have started to call for the return of the MMD. We must prepare, we must renew ourselves, we must re-energize our structures and prepare for one of the most aggressive campaigns the Party has ever mounted.
I call on all Zambians who value democracy and a strong economy to come and join MMD, those who left, we offer you an opportunity to return to your party. Welcome home. I believe that, ZAMBIA SHALL BE SAVED.
I THANK YOU