It is totally unconstitutional for MMD members to demand for a convention before the tenure of the sitting executive expires, says former national chairman Michael Mabenga.
Mabenga explained that holding another convention before the tenure of the current office bearers expires was unconstitutional, adding that it would actually further split the MMD into even deeper divisions with the already existing differences between members.
He said right now, reconciliation would be the best remedy to salvage the party from possible extinction and that it was incumbent upon the top leadership to resolve their differences and project a way forward for the party.
“The party constitution does not allow for two conventions in a one-5year term, but there is still room for reconsiiliation to try and seal the gap that has grown betweem members,” he said.
Mabenga said that reconciliatation was the only sotulton to help rebuild the party to were it used to be unlike calling for another national convention that was against party rules.
He urged on a route of reconciliation as the only solution that would garantee the future of the former ruling party.
Mabenga feared that holding another convention would only split the MMD party into further divisions with the gap between the opposing faction members growing bigger and bigger creating more problems for the former ruling party. There have been leadership wrangles in the MMD fueled by the two party vice presidents Dr Biran Chituwo, Dr Michael Kaingu, national party spokesperson Dora Siliya and former Solwezi MP Lucky Mulusa who have called for another extraordinary convention to oust party president Dr Nevers Mumba’s executive.
Among the reasons some NEC members are calling for the convetion to replace Dr. Mumba was failure to return formerly MMD held seats after nulifications or deaths in by-elections.
Former party president Rupiah Banda stepped down after losing the national general elections of 2011, after which Dr Mumba assumed power through an extra ordinary convention and has led the party ever since. Siliya, on behalf of those calling for Mumba’s exit insists the party was dead under the current leadership and demanded for an immediate rebirth of the MMD by voting in a new party leadership.
And Muchinga Province youths said the recently lose the party suffered in the local government elections in Mpulungu should not be blamed on Dr Mumba and his executive. The youths explained that in fact, the loss was as a result of the absence of senior party officials including various MMD Members of Parliament who should have been there to support the candidate. “The truth is, all former ministers in MMD today, are directly responsible for the 2011 loss to PF, why did they not call for the convention to remove former party president Rupiah Banda? The answer is simple they were too comfortable and relaxing and they were not able to carry the party forward.” Muhabi (Lungu) was not there, Dr. Mumba was in Canada. It is the members at grassroots who struggled to campaign alone and the end result was a loss,” they said. They said no one person should be allowed to hold the MMD as a personal to holder commodity, because everybody had a role to play, especially the young people who should be allowed to carry the party forward.
“The senior party MPs including our own Northern parliamentarians in the likes of Kapembwa Simbao of Senga Hill Constituency, Felix Mutati from Lunte and Simfukwe of Mbala Central Constituency, then what did we expect from the electorates?
If they did not come and help the party at Province level, how can they claim for a convention now?” they said.