The much talked about Alliance for Democracy (AFORD) came to a standstill on Tuesday as he party’s incumbent leader, Enoch Chihana and presidential aspirant Frank Mwenifumbo were embroiled in a new battle over real delegates.
Chihana’s camp alleged that delegates from Mwenifumbo’s camp were mere “buy-outs from the streets,” a thing the latter group quashed.
Ironically, most district chairpersons, including AFORD’s secretary general, Christopher Ritchie, belong to Mwenifumbo’s camp.
The district chairpersons are the ones that have the mandate to identify delegates who are eligible voters for the convention.
By 16:46 in the afternoon, the two parties were yet to agree on the delegates. Heavy police presence punctuated the venue—St. Don Bosco Youth Institute.
At an impromptu press briefing, Chihana told reporters that his colleague, Mwenifumbo, had brought in bogus delegates.
“The delegates from the other side are fake. As a democratic person, I would not tolerate such a thing. It is like we are raping democracy,” said Chihana, looking seemingly composed.
Mwenifumbo was not accessible to the press but he looked unhappy throughout.
By 18:03, it was unclear whether the convention would take place as, at the time, the national executive committee (NEC) was in a meeting to map way forward.
If the fight is not resolved, it could threaten the convention. It is individual delegates who will vote at the indaba.