At the MMD dinner dance held at Savoy Hotel, acting President Nevers Mumba made some usual political statements aimed at the opposition and then he added:
In the previous article, I had mentioned how that after President Mwanawasa's return from New York in September 2004, it took only 24 hours for Vice-President Nevers Mumba to be fired.
The firing itself came as a shock to Nevers Mumba
What is even worse is that President Mwanawasa
felt so aggrieved at Nevers
even paraded Nevers' letter of apology that he
had written in connection with the reports The Post had carried about the airport event the day earlier.
Most interestingly, President Mwanawasa
even mentioned that he
had regretted appointing Nevers
was fired, a brood of the Mwanawasa camp
within government and party was excited that Nevers
had been fired.
The perceived threat that Nevers
presented to all those that were aspiring to succeed Mwanawasa
had now been taken of.
In the opinion of some, the MMD
would now move on and keep the Nevers Mumba factor behind them.
Not so fast though, the Nevers Mumba factor was alive and well and in the next few months he
was to strike back and strike back real hard.
After the September firing, Nevers
left government house, his
official residence within days.
Typically, a former vice-president is expected to stay in the official residence for a few weeks to allow for him to look for decent accommodation elsewhere.
left the country for the USA and a few other countries to perhaps recuperate.
After this firing, he mentioned of how he tried the sport of golf and also found solace in taking a few courses at Regent University in Virginia.
had earlier enrolled there in a Master of Public Policy program.
Upon return to Zambia, a few months latter, Nevers
discovered that the support he
had garnered within the MMD
branches across the country was quite unshaken.
In fact, even within the MMD NEC itself, it seemed Nevers
had some sizeable support.
In a party that had grown to dislike Mwanawasa's hardline style of leadership, most within the MMD party had taken Mumba
to be a safe alternative.
was about to go to the convention that year.
Now that it was just November, the arrangements for the convention were delayed until the next year 2005.
MMD members who had seen Nevers
as an alternative to Mwanawasa
had to move quickly to assure Nevers
of their support.
Even MMD stalwarts like Sikota Wina and his
wife were reported to be among those supporting Nevers Mumba to take over as MMD president.
presidential candidature was gaining momentum, he
enlisted the support of President Frederick Chiluba.
knew that openly accepting Chiluba's endorsement would be a political gaffe.
And so he
had to be very careful.
Implicitly then, Nevers
had accepted Chiluba's endorsement.
And if Nevers
had considered Chiluba
to be a thief - now that he
was running for president of the MMD he
could do with as much support as he
It did not matter that when in government Nevers did push for Chiluba's prosecution.
An enemy had become a friend - politics par excellence.
And then came the announcement.
was featured on Anthony Mukwita's Let the People Talk.
on the other hand gathered enough intelligence both within the party and indeed the nation to know that Nevers
was going to be a viable candidate against him.
was told there is a revolt in the MMD branches and Nevers
had real support.
Additionally, Vernon announced that the MMD
was going to commence disciplinary action against Nevers Mumba
Nevers had been expelled effectively ending his ambition to be president of the MMD.
Vernon Mwaanga had also ensured that the electoral college was cleansed of all the supporters of Nevers Mumba
Enlisting the services of a shadowy figure known as John Ziba, Nevers Mumba
established and registered a new political party to be known as the Reform Party.
With an emblem of a charging bull, the party symbol was going to show everything that Nevers
stood for - tenacity, strength and power.
The Reform Party had for its slogan, a phrase taken from the national anthem - strong and free.
This party was not going to last long.
did not manage to garner any significant support for it, and before long, the Reform Party remained a party on paper.
However, like I mentioned above - Nevers
was no Michael Sata
What Sata represented in the minds of Zambians
was far much more real than what Nevers
And so if Nevers
had thought that his
new party was going to succeed he
was in for a rude shock.
The Reform Party made no real inroads into the political scene.
was expelled, the Bemba-speaking
section within the MMD
had lost their political symbol and with it they had lost their influence.
This group now wanted to get back its lost power.
knew of this influence and in fact it had been one reason why he
had earlier appointed Nevers in the first place - to appease them.
This MMD convention
and the way it voted in Katele Kalumba
made Nevers Mumba
to exclaim that Mwanawasa
had betrayed the fight against corruption.
To bolster his
chances in politics, Nevers
knew that the Reform Party was headed nowhere.
Mulenga coincidentally is nephew to Nevers Mumba
had campaigned hard in Chinsali and had bolstered his
popularity in Chinsali.
In the battle of the 2 adoption certificates, it was Mulenga's that won.
A family meeting in Chinsali had persuaded the uncle to defer to the nephew and drop out of the race for Chinsali.
The 2006 elections came and Nevers
never again appeared with Michael Sata
It seemed like dejavu for Nevers
There was no room for Nevers Mumba
sin had been too much.
temptations were unforgivable.
Two years after the 2006 elections, President Levy Mwanawasa died.
Fresh elections were to be called within 90 days of the burial.
found its candidate in the republic vice-president Rupiah Banda.
Knowing that the MMD
was basically non-existent in the Bemba-speaking regions of Luapula and Northern Provinces, candidate Rupiah Banda turned to both President Chiluba
and to Nevers Mumba
In countless campaign stops, Nevers
appeared with Rupiah Banda
in Mansa, Chinsali and several others places.
Campaigning for Rupiah Banda
meant almost instantaneously that Nevers
was still going to be game.
After Rupiah Banda
won the elections - Nevers'
dream of going to Canada as High Commissioner would come true.
The turbulent priest, turbulent vice-president and controversial politician was now on his
way to Ottawa to become the country's ambassador.
Upon hitting the ground in Ottawa, Nevers
became a hit.
learnt the art of diplomacy quickly and got loved almost instantaneously by his
In 2010 he was appointed dean of the diplomatic corps of Canada. Apart from Canada he was also ambassador to several Caribbean nations such as Bermuda, Jamaica and The Bahamas.
Within the business community, Nevers
connected very well.
Barrick Gold had just come to Zambia and were making huge investments into Lumwana.
President Banda was happy to have Nevers in Ottawa.
Since Nevers' ambition knew no boundaries, Rupiah Banda did well to keep Nevers as far as possible.
However, MMD members and indeed many MMD insiders were still watching Nevers
from afar and given the right circumstances they could give him another chance.
Ambassador Nevers Mumba
in Ottawa got the shocking news and knew there will be changes soon in Ottawa.
Hours after Sata was sworn in, Nevers
sent his congratulations but knew that his time as Ambassador had come to an end.
Foreign Affairs Minister Chishimba Kabwili recalled Nevers Mumba
with immediate effect.
To this recall, Nevers
"I will come back to Zambia after the 3 months expires in accordance with my contract."
This three months would give Nevers
the necessary time to bid farewell to the contacts he
had gathered in Ottawa.
It would also give him the time to reflect on his
It was the second ballot that assured Nevers Mumba
That morning, Nevers Mumba had been elected president of the Movement for Multiparty Democracy.
From State House, President Sata castigated Nevers Mum