RB in for top job

THE MMD will not hesitate to suspend any member of the party who will dispute the National Executive Committee (NEC)’s decision to adopt former republican president Rupiah Banda as its candidate in the January, 20, 2015 presidential by-election,  party national secretary Muhabi Lungu has warned.

But suspended MMD president Nevers Mumba has said it had been established that the purported NEC meeting held to suspend him and also adopt Mr Banda as presidential candidate was actually illegal.

Dr Mumba said the party constitution demanded a seven-day notice be given before any NEC meeting could be held.

Mr Lungu however maintained that the party had notified Dr Mumba seven days before the NEC meeting took place on Sunday.

He explained that on Sunday the meeting was suspended after NEC advised Dr Mumba to meet with Mr Banda to agree on who would stand as MMD presidential candidate.

Mr Lungu said Dr Mumba did not report back to NEC after holding a meeting with Mr Banda but instead went ahead to hold a press conference on Tuesday, to announce his intention to stand as the MMD candidate in the forthcoming presidential elections.

“It was after his decision not to report back to NEC that made the committee decide to suspend him on Tuesday afternoon,” he said

Mr Lungu was speaking at a press conference at the party secretariat in Lusaka yesterday.

He said the party had since written to Mr Banda notifying him that NEC had chosen him to stand as party presidential candidate.

Mr Lungu said according to article 12 of MMD constitution, Dr Mumba had no authority to suspend operations of the party secretariat.

He urged every member of the party to rally behind Mr Banda because he had the blessings of NEC.

But in his response, Dr Mumba said it had been established that the purported meeting held to suspend him was illegal.

“Our constitution demands that seven day notice be given before any NEC meeting can be held. It has been established that no constitutional notice was given,” he said.

Dr Mumba said as president of the party and chairman of NEC, he did not call the purported meeting or receive notification of the same.

“Many other NEC members were equally not informed, like the vice-national chairman, Mr. Edgar Keembe, the chairman for legal, Hon Bradford Machila, the national youth chairman, Hon Howard Kunda, the chairman for education, Prof. Geoffrey Lungwangwa and many others, including key provincial leaders,” he said.

Dr Mumba advised members of MMD across the country that they should be assured that all party programmes, as planned, have continued under his leadership.

He expressed confidence that the “illegalities” would soon be sorted out in order to concentrate on the preparations for the presidential by-election.