MICHAEL Kaingu has likened the MMD and UPND’s disagreement over the Mufumbwe parliamentary seat to “two mothers in the Bible who wanted to share a baby into two parts”.
And Kaingu has charged that the UPND’s “insincerity” over the Mufumbwe seat could take the MMD into oblivion if left unchecked.
Kaingu, the former ruling party’s vice-president for politics, charged that the UPND was being insincere over the Mufumbwe seat, which fell vacant following Stephen Masumba’s expulsion from the MMD.He said during a live phone-in programme on Mazabuka Radio that the working relationship between the two parties risked being spoiled if UPND decided to float a candidate for the November 8 by-election in Mufumbwe.
The MMD has already announced the preferred candidate for the by-election while the UPND, their pact partners, are also looking for a candidate to adopt for the same seat.
But Kaingu has asked the UPND to give chance to the MMD to defend the Mufumbwe seat.
“You see, UPND grabbed close to six parliamentary seats in Western Province from MMD and today if something bad happened and we happen to go for by-elections it would be illogical for MMD to field candidates because those seats were previously held by UPND. Therefore, we expect our friends from UPND to follow suit.
History will tell you that Mufumbwe is an MMD seat and we are going to defend it. Let us not behave like two mothers in the Bible who wanted to share a baby into two parts…,” he said.
Kaingu, who is also Mwandi member of parliament said the MMD would not tolerate insincerity by the UPND because it could cripple the former ruling party if left unchecked.
He said claims that the UPND was strong on the ground could not be used as a yardstick to deny the MMD an opportunity to reclaim its seat, adding that even the MMD was strong in Mufumbwe.
Kaingu said the UPND should emulate the MMD’s sincerity by allowing the former to contest the Livingstone parliamentary seat despite the massive support the latter enjoyed in the tourist capital.
“We have also allowed UPND to contest a ward by-election in Kaoma, but why can’t our colleagues do the same? We can only challenge each other if the ruling party loses a seat,” he said.
Kaingu urged UPND to rally behind the MMD in Mufumbwe with its supporters and give votes to the MMD.
“If UPND goes ahead and contests the seat, it will terribly lose because only MMD has party structures from all organs,” he said.
Some callers urged the MMD to pull out of the working pact with the UPND.
Meanwhile, several other callers into the programme condemned Kaingu for tearing President Michael Sata’s speech to Parliament on claims that it did not have critical issues.
Some callers who had almost turned emotional charged that the behavior portrayed by Kaingu was un-parliamentary, embarrassing and deserved stiffer punishment to serve as a warning to other members of parliament.
The callers observed that the electorate in Mwandi did not send Kaingu to Parliament to engage in un-parliamentary conduct but to debate issues that would end poverty and take development to the constituency.
One caller also urged the MMD to take necessary punitive measures against Kaingu because his conduct had the capacity to erode confidence from its sympathisers.
Responding to callers’ comments, Kaingu said he had no regrets for tearing the speech because the copy he tore was not the one the Republican President read when he officially opened Parliament.
“I have no regrets on what I did because I was not influenced by anyone. We were given a different speech as parliamentarians from what His Excellency read. The speech was inconsequential. Posterity will judge us if we do not do things properly,” said Kaingu.
And party president Nevers Mumba last week said he did not see anything wrong with Kaingu’s conduct in Parliament because, according to him, President Sata’s speech was “alien” to the House.