Chishimba Kambwili has vowed that he will fight “tooth and nail” to be on the ballot in the 2021 presidential election despite manoeuvres by the ruling Patriotic Front and his former secretary general Mwenya Musenge to remove him from the political scene.
Kambwili, the leader of the de-registered National Democratic Congress, said at a press briefing, Sunday, that the party would never be dissolved and has promised to meet the PF and Musenge in the legal battlefield.
His briefing followed Musenge’s announcement Saturday that the National Democratic Congress had been dissolved.
Kambwili said he is aware of machinations to register a new NDC party by Musenge under the name New Democratic Party but wondered how he would succeed without money as his de-registered party was funding all his movements.
During a media briefing, Sunday, he said the party had appealed against its de-registration but Minister of Home Affairs Stephen Kampyongo chose to correspond with Musenge who wrote to re-register the party with new office bearers.
“This is what even MMD used to do to me…arrests, but NDC yena, tuleimbana meno, inama mumeno, taya fumepo (we shall fight tooth and nail, it will not be removed),” Kambwili said.
He told his party members that the NDC “has not been registered”.
“People of Zambia and members of the NDC, don’t worry, NDC has not been deregistered; the minister has refused to hear our appeal. There is the next course of action that we are going to take; an appropriate course of action but I appeal to all our members to continue organising the party and those who feel they are ready to go with Mwenya Musenge, the door is open. Let me tell you Musenge and Kampyongo that all your manipulations, we are aware of them. Where you had the meeting, where you discussed that you are going to register a new party, dissolve this party and register an NDC but with ‘new’ and not National. But I can tell you something that you will meet us in the legal battlefield. That new NDC will never see light in this country because this is misbehaving by Kampyongo. Because listen, our appeal is very explicit, listen to this: ‘following a meeting held by the eight office bearers whose names are indicated on the minutes of the meeting held on Saturday, seventh day of September 2019 at which it was resolved to appeal to your office against the deregistration of National Democratic Party, we hereby attach minutes of the said meeting for ease of reference’,” he said and later read the minutes from a meeting Musenge held with others.
He said the PF’s plans in collaboration with Musenge were meant to remove him from the political space.
“My appeal to honorable Kampyongo is that ‘young man, that office you are holding has rules and regulations and you cannot create your own rules. Can you be decent enough to respond to the letter that we wrote to you, our appeal, respond to it’. We have already heard in the News Diggers Newspaper, where it says ‘Kampyongo refuses to deal with CKs NDCs deregistration but the he will deal with Mwenya Musenge’. Under what law? Is it the minister who should dictate the member of a particular political party? We were appealing against the cancellation of our certificate, on the other hand Musenge was writing to re-register the party with new office bearers. You can see ubupuba (foolishness) of Mwenya Musenge because he thinks that Zambians don’t think,” Kambwili said.
“Out of the 10, two of them have been expelled, that is Musenge and Steven Chewe. The other eight remain with this grouping. So now, who are the legitimate owners of the NDC? The majority who have remained or a loner who moved out of this group alone? Who are the owners? So Kampyongo my brother, even if to say your brain was dead, how can you be corresponding with a person who is alone against a grouping where there are eight registered owners of the party? I think the problem that Kampyongo has is not NDC, is not anything, it is Chishimba Kambwili. The problem that the PF have over NDC is not the constitution, there are just scared of ‘imbwili’.”
He said Musenge’s plan was clear considering his actions after the deregistration of the NDC.
“You can even check, Mwenya Musenge writes, instead of appealing against deregistration, he just writes to the minister telling him that ‘can you allow us to re-register NDC with new office bearers’, meaning removing those who are there and Chishimba Kambwili. Meaning the whole thing is not about the constitution, it’s about removing Chishimba Kambwili from the political scene because the PF understands that I am a political giant. And in answering him, he says ‘no we cannot allow you to re-register the same party which has been deregistered but you can register a new party’. Now get this joke, Kampyongo advises Musenge to say ‘go and register a new party called New Democratic Congress which will still be NDC’ so that you can get the members of NDC to your side,” Kambwili said.
He further wondered how Musenge would succeed in his new party without money, alleging that the NDC used to fund all his movements.
“He has no political stamina and he cannot worry whether the party was deregistered or not, he has not spent not even a one kwacha on this political party. Wherever Mwenya Musenge used to go, even when he was secretary general, we used to give him money. For him to travel from Kitwe to come here for a meeting, we used to pay for his fuel. When he goes for elections, we used to give him money. So he has not spent not even K1 on the NDC so he doesn’t even care. He may have spent his time but he has not spent any money,” said Kambwili.