MR President bring back the country on a route of sanity, law and order, Nevers Mumba has pleaded with President Edgar Lungu.

Addressing the media at the MMD secretariat in Lusaka yesterday, Mumba alleged the Lukashya by-election was rigged through pre-marked ballot papers.

“How can we end up with 114 votes when in one ward we had hit 1,050, how? They over rigged, they over did it, they should have measured a little bit to make sure they don’t go overboard. It’s for this reason that the MMD cannot congratulate our colleagues in the PF on their presumed victory in the last election and either do we agree that the number of votes allocated to MMD are genuine. How can our candidate get two votes at his polling station where he voted for himself, his wife was there, his children and he is a pastor of a church and church members went with him to vote but when they counted the votes, there were two votes…what kind of miracle is this? I believe in miracles but that kind of miracle is not the miracle that the Zambian people should entertain,” he said. “Two PF cadres were nabbed by the police for being in possession of pre-marked ballot papers. When this information reached the senior leaders of the PF, the duo was released privately. A PF cadre was arrested by the police for taking a picture of his ballot paper before casting his vote. When interrogated by the police, he stated that the PF leaders were suspecting him that he would vote for another candidate and therefore was not going to be given promised money if he did not provide proof. A vote is a secret matter in a democracy. To intimidate members of the public to vote a certain way based on financial gratification is illegal and enough ground to nullify the election.”

Mumba said there were many other irregularities for which the ECZ should have suspended the election.

“Today, I choose to speak to the core and soul of our nation. I further choose to bear my soul to the nation and hopefully define my long held vision of Zambia Shall Be Saved. This is not a political slogan but a vision God gave me long before I joined politics. World history has clear examples of bad governments and good governments. We all know what a bad and failing government looks like when we see one. We also know what a good government looks like when we see it.”

Mumba said the Lukashya by-election was a case study of how the country had fallen, as a people.

Mumba, whose party took part in the by-election that was held last week on Thursday and scooped by the PF’s candidate George Chisanga, said Lukashya poll showed the rot and corruption the country had embraced as a way of life.

“Until we choose another path of self-respect, integrity and adherence to the rule of law, our country shall not be saved and shall not prosper. Our responsibility as a people is to ensure that our nation, Zambia, which we have by choice clothed with a Christian name, does not become a failed state. We do this not for ourselves but the generations that shall come after us,” he said. “So, my statement today seeks to demonstrate how far we have fallen and what needs to be done to restore our dignity and image as a nation. The case of the just ended Lukashya by-election is a good place to start.”

Mumba maintained that by-election results as announced by the Electoral Commission of Zambia in Lukashya did not reflect the MMD’s performance.

He insisted that the MMD candidate did not get 114 votes as indicated in the ECZ final results.

“The privileged information we have has revealed that MMD was targeted for humiliation by use of pre-marked ballots and the swapping of ballot boxes. The strategy of our colleagues in government has been to destabilise the MMD and find a way to take the nationwide structures of the MMD. It is against this background that a group led by Raphael Nakacinda against court judgments continues to claim to represent the MMD, a party to which he no longer belongs with a view to destabilise it,” he said.

Mumba, who spent six days in Lukashya campaigning, said his claims were based on first hand intelligence information and the consequent illegal activities which surrounded the by-election.

“While in Kasama I heard a knock on my door at the lodge our team had camped for the Lukashya campaign. A senior member of the PF who is also a committed Christian came to see me at midnight. He looked worried and uncomfortable. He told me to the face that PF under normal circumstances stands no chance of winning this election as there is no good will on the ground,” he narrated. “A decision has therefore been made to rig the election. He further indicated that MMD was targeted for humiliation, so that our political opponents could use our loss as a licence to further destabilise the MMD. He advised that the best thing is to compel the ECZ to postpone the election because the levels of malpractices were too excessive. He advised me to sound the alarm about the pending rigging, a thing I did the following day on Radio Mano and rally on our last day of the campaign.”

Mumba said, the said senior PF member confirmed that pre-marked ballots had arrived in Kasama.

He said the named PF member confirmed that 4,500 people had been recruited to stuff the ballot papers in ballot boxes in all the polling stations.

“He confirmed that mealie meal was being distributed in the different wards by DMMU and that PF camps were being supplied by taxpayers money with foodstuffs. This alone is sufficient ground to nullify the election. He provided information on the many GRZ vehicles being used in the campaign which we had also seen. We are unable to provide the whole list of malpractices to allow the team we have mandated to travel back to Kasama to do an effective forensic audit of all the malpractices to do their job undisturbed,” he said.

Mumba complained about the extent of violence experienced in the campaign, stating that it could have caused a working ECZ to suspend the election or disqualified the culprits.

He recalled that the police for the most part stood helplessly as they watched people being beaten and vehicles being broken into and destroyed.

Mumba maintained that it was an illegitimate election and the outcome was also illicit.

“Its’ for this reason that the MMD cannot on moral grounds congratulate the PF as having won the said election. Neither do we agree that the number of votes allocated to MMD is genuine. How can our candidate get two votes at his polling station where he voted for himself with his family and his church members? Our numbers in one ward are reported by our agents at 1,050 votes for MMD and the PF had 400 votes in that same ward. How then can we end up with 114 votes for the whole constituency?” Mumba wondered. “Our verification team is on its way to Kasama to collect all evidence and witnesses to all these malpractices. It is at this point that the party shall decide on the course of action to take. I wish to state that these are our preliminary findings and we await the whole report from our verification team.”

He said it was a proven fact that electoral commissions in Africa were the source of conflict and national insecurity.

Mumba recalled that a few decades ago, coup detat’s were responsible for illegitimate takeover of governments.

“The AU however addressed this matter adequately and coups are no longer fashionable. However, the new juntas of keeping ruling parties in government against the wish of the people are electoral commissions across the continent,” he said.

Mumba said the Lukashya case could be called the “2020 ECZ scandal.”

He said the fact that against all the malpractices, the ECZ was quiet and gone ahead to authenticate the elections confirmed the MMD’s fears that the ECZ is defunct and impotent.

“Our concern as a people should therefore be how do we even think of facing the 2021 elections under such a regime? Based on these flawed elections a narrative has been formed in the media that the people of Zambia are in love with the PF and that the UPND is a social media based party which is absent from the grassroots while no one in Zambia wants MMD,” he said.

Mumba also said the MMD was aware that an IT centre has been set up which would permanently hack into the ECZ server to manipulate the numbers in the 2021 presidential and general elections.

“The Americans would say that ‘PF are drinking their own cool aid.’ …We are following very closely as to how the recruited South African IT guru shall achieve this goal. The good news is that we know where these facilities are and who is responsible for it,” Mumba said.

He said his heart voices out that the country was on a wrong path.

Mumba said manipulating the electoral process to remain in power was the most-evil act anyone can do.

He urged the general public to gang up and dismantle the current ECZ and replace it with a functional and patriotic institution.

Mumba said the current ECZ was a danger to peace.

“To the Church, let it rise and speak for equity and justice for all. Let us demand that the PF adheres to the rule of law. As of now citizens are doing their best to keep the law, but the PF has chosen the path of lawlessness. They are holding huge rallies in the COVID-19 season. Campaigns have not been announced by ECZ,” he said. “This changes the whole reason for an election. It should never be that the most corrupt should win elections but the most qualified and the most favoured by the electorate. Very few African countries have this privilege. Zambia can start afresh and divorce itself from the list of African failed states in as far as the electoral process is concerned. Give Zambians leaders of their choice and see Zambia get united and develop in leaps and bounds.”

However, Mumba urged his members and sympathisers both in Zambia and in the Diaspora not to lose hope.

“Some people may call us underdogs as we head towards the 2021 election. In August next year we shall not be the first underdogs to win. History has demonstrated that underdogs have won more contests than those who call themselves frontrunners,” said Mumba.

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