Kennedy Kamba says once Secretary General Davies Mwila is notified about GBM’s intentions to rejoin the PF, the party hierarchy will decide to advise the former UPND vice-president to follow laid down procedure of applying for admission back into the ruling party.
And Kamba who is acting PF Lusaka Province secretary says Mwila, his deputy Mumbi Phiri and national chairman Samuel Mukupa were not available to welcome Geoffrey Byalya Mwamba because his defection was unknown to the senior leadership, the defector visited the secretariat without informing the top hierarchy.
He said it was not true that Mwamba was snubbed as reported by News Diggers, stressing that since GBM was rejoining the party as an ordinary member, it was not necessary for Mwila or other senior officials to receive him in the party.
“When you say that GBM was welcomed by cadres, and Paul Moonga and Kennedy Kamba were the senior-most cadres, you are undermining the authority of Mr Paul Moonga who is a member of the Central Committee and myself who is the provincial secretary. You can’t say ‘Mr Davies Mwila, Mumbi Phiri and Samuel Mukupa shunned the event, not even Sunday Chanda was there’ that statement suggests that GBM has not been welcomed in the party, which is very wrong,” Kamba said.
“If the Secretary General is attending the national dialogue, who else can receive Mr GBM in Lusaka, apart from the chairman of Lusaka? Even Mr GBM himself, he said I am rejoining the party as an ordinary member, so if he is an ordinary member, do you expect the President, the SG or the national chairman to receive him? The answer is no! GBM himself said ‘I am not coming here for positions, I am coming here as an ordinary member so you the provincial officials make use of me’. So he is not coming as a vice-president”
When reminded that Antonio Mwanza who also defected from FDD and joined the party as an ordinary member was welcomed by Cabinet Minister Stephen Kampyongo, among other top party leaders who included the deputy secretary general, Kamba urged this reporter to leave politics to politicians, saying Mwanza’s defection was arranged while that of GBM was not.
“You are a journalists so you must do what you do best and leave politics to politicians. Even if Mr Mwila, Mr Kampyongo and Madam Mumbi are not there, we have constituency officials, we have district officials and we have provincial officials to welcome him. So stop demeaning us. Mr Mwila was busy because he was at Mulungushi where they are having the National Dialogue, Mr Mukupa is also busy working, and Ms Mumbi Phiri was also at Mulungu with the other members of parliament,” he insisted.
“So we were not aware that GBM was going to come and pay a courtesy call on the party secretariat to signify that ‘I have apologised to the President’. We never arranged anything, Antonio Mwanza’s defection was arranged, we planned for it, but we did know Mr GBM was going to defect to PF, he came at our secretariat without our knowledge.”
And Kamba said the party rules were that people like GBM and others who were returning to the PF are expect to apply for readmission.
“Listen now, there is even a constitution, an article in our Constitution which says if you ditch the PF and you want to come back, you have to re-apply. So what the MCC (Moonga) said is that he is going to report back to the Secretary General of the party and the President and inform him of the intentions of GBM. It will be up to the hierarchy of the party to advice GBM to follow the right channel by re-applying to join the party,” said Kamba.
“Meanwhile, we are not going to close the door if he comes here to greet us because he is not our political enemy. So GBM was never snubbed, he came here without letting the senior party officials know, they never knew as of yesterday. But that does not mean that he was snubbed, you are misleading the nation, which is not right. Sunday Chanda is not a party official, he is a worker for the party, even Antonio Mwanza is not an official. Those are civil servants of the party, and that should be put very clearly. They are on salaries as they work for the party, meanwhile, party officials are not on salaries. So they don’t need to come and welcome defectors. But it doesn’t mean that if Sunday Chanda is missing he is more senior than the provincial chairman who is a member of the central committee. If Mr Moonga was there to welcome GBM, you can’t say ‘not even Sunday Chanda was there’. What are you trying to implicate (sic)?”