News / Africa

Zambia Opposition Leader Warns Against Party Defection

TEXT SIZE - +
Peter Clottey
A leading member of Zambia’s main opposition Movement for Multiparty Democracy (MMD) says the government is encouraging opposition legislators to defect to the ruling party by appointing them to the Cabinet-level jobs without consultations.

Dr. Brian Chituwo, the MMD vice president, says that by taking this action the ruling Patriotic Front (PF) party is preventing his party from carrying out its role, which he said, is to act as a check on the government.

“We can serve our country effectively, even more so, by ensuring that we provide those vital checks and balances in a democracy like ours,” said Chituwo.

But this will be hampered, he says, because the government has offered deputy ministerial positions to 10 parliamentarians from the MMD.

“This means that these [legislators] have two allegiances; one to the party that sponsored them to parliament and the other the executive, for which they are working,” said Chituwo.

But, President Michael Sata says he is willing to work with all parliamentarians who have the country’s best interest at heart regardless of their political affiliation.

“I have, with good intentions, appointed our colleagues from the opposition into government. But, it is the same misguided and unpatriotic opposition leaders that have been threatening to make the country ungovernable,” said Sata.

The constitution allows a president to appoint legislators to serve in the administration irrespective of their party affiliation.

Some Zambians say the country would be best served if its best and brightest serve in any current government. But, Chituwo says Sata failed to consult leaders of the MMD to seek their official consent and approval before appointing its legislators to serve as deputy ministers in his government.

“This has been our objection - that President Sata has not consulted the party leadership,” continued Chituwo. “This infuriated our [leader] to actually storm the State House to try to seek an audience with our republican president, but to no avail.”

He said deceased president Levi Mwanawasa of the MMD held discussions with leaders of opposition parties before appointing their members into his administration. 

Chituwo said Zambia could become a one-party state if the PF continues to woo opposition lawmakers to join the ruling party by appointing them to ministerial jobs.

Clottey interview with Dr. Brian Chituwo, the MMD vice president
Clottey interview with Dr. Brian Chituwo, the MMD vice presidenti
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X

You May Like

Multimedia Relatives of South Korean Ferry Victims Fire at Authorities

46 people are confirmed dead, but some 250 remain trapped inside sunken ferry More

War Legacy Haunts Vietnam, US Relations

$84 million project aims to clean up soil contaminated by Agent Orange More

Wikipedia Proves Useful for Tracking Flu

Technique gave better results than Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Google’s Flu Trends More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ukraine, Russia, United in Faith, Divided in Politicsi
X
Michael Eckels
April 19, 2014
There is a strong historical religious connection between Russia and Ukraine. But what role is religion playing in the current conflict? In the run-up to Easter, Michael Eckels in Moscow reports for VOA.
Video

Video Ukraine, Russia, United in Faith, Divided in Politics

There is a strong historical religious connection between Russia and Ukraine. But what role is religion playing in the current conflict? In the run-up to Easter, Michael Eckels in Moscow reports for VOA.
Video

Video Face of American Farmer is Changing

The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Donetsk Governor: Ukraine Military Assault 'Delicate But Necessary'

Around a dozen state buildings in eastern Ukraine remain in the hands of pro-Russian protesters who are demanding a referendum on self-rule. The governor of the whole Donetsk region is among those forced out by the protesters. He spoke to VOA's Henry Ridgwell from his temporary new office in Donetsk city.
Video

Video Drones May Soon Send Data From High Seas

Drones are usually associated with unmanned flying vehicles, but autonomous watercraft are also becoming useful tools for jobs ranging from scientific exploration to law enforcement to searching for a missing airliner in the Indian Ocean. VOA’s George Putic reports on sea-faring drones.
Video

Video New Earth-Size Planet Found

Not too big, not too small. Not too hot, not too cold. A newly discovered planet looks just right for life as we know it, according to an international group of astronomers. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.
Video

Video Copts in Diaspora Worry About Future in Egypt

Around 10 percent of Egypt’s population belong to the Coptic faith, making them the largest Christian minority in the Middle East. But they have become targets of violence since the revolution three years ago. With elections scheduled for May and the struggle between the Egyptian military and Islamists continuing, many Copts abroad are deeply worried about the future of their ancient church. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky visited a Coptic church outside Washington DC.
Video

Video Critics Say Venezuelan Protests Test Limits of Military's Support

During the two months of deadly anti-government protests that have rocked the oil-rich nation of Venezuela, President Nicolas Maduro has accused the opposition of trying to initiate a coup. Though a small number of military officers have been arrested for allegedly plotting against the government, VOA’s Brian Padden reports the leadership of the armed forces continues to support the president, at least for now.
Video

Video More Millenials Unplug to Embrace Board Games

A big new trend in the U.S. toy industry has more consumers switching off their high-tech gadgets to play with classic toys, like board games. This is especially true among the so-called millenial generation - those born in the 1980's and 90's. Elizabeth Lee has more from an unusual café in Los Angeles, where the new trend is popular and business is booming.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
AppleAndroid