BRIGADIER GENERAL GODFREY MIYANDA’S RESPONSE TO MUNSHYA WA MUNSHYA’S ARTICLE TITLED ‘WHEN A GENERAL CHERRY-PICKS HISTORY: MY RESPONSE TO GODFREY KENNETH MIYANDA’
Munshya wa Munshya’s article titled “When A General Cherry-Picks History: My Response to Godfrey Kenneth Miyanda by Munshya wa Munshya” seems to be responding to my article titled “Objection to Munshya wa Munshya’s Personal Attack” published on page 6 of the Daily Nation on 28th September 2013. But on close examination I find that his article is a clever ruse for him to have a second bite at the cherry! This latest effort does not deserve an answer because it is a forgery but respond I must.
Munshya wa Munshya has forged his own statement of 20th September 2013 and supplanted it with fresh talk! I object and refuse to be an accessory to his laundering scheme. If I ‘aggregate’ my response I shall be perpetuating a never-ending debate. Instead I shall just expose the duplicity (deliberate deception) in his response. I shall do this by pointing out the forgery, then drawing attention to his unsubstantiated accusations and unsupported malicious “opinions” based on conjured up facts.
BACKGROUND OF MY COMPLAINT: In my article published in the Daily Nation (page 6 dated Saturday 28th September 2013) I based my complaint on Munshya wa Munshya’s article dated 20th September 2013, which I quote again: “a. ‘when Chiluba and his cohorts – Michael Sata and Miyanda TO BE EXACT- found solace in the barbaric use of the Public Order Act’; b. ‘further, when Chiluba, Sata and Miyanda amended the 1996 Constitution…’”. I used his own EXACT words to correct the record or ‘history’!
THE FORGERY: In his current article of 4th October 2013 Munshya wa Munshya has forged his own original article, adding what he had not written and basing his comments on the new cherries. The following are examples of new material:
(i) “Brigadier General Godfrey Kenneth Miyanda has objected to my characterization of him as a cohort to a group of politicians that I deemed to have been responsible for the ‘barbaric use of the Public Order Act in the 1990s’. I had said this in my Daily Nation column published on Friday 20 September 2013”: He has not just forged but has lied that he said this in his article of 20th September. By adding ‘a group of politicians’ and ‘deeming’ he has changed the meaning and imposed his own history!
(ii) “He (Miyanda) has also objected to my description of his role as a cohort to both Chiluba and Sata in the role the trio played in the 1996 constitutional amendments”: This is also a new addition that has changed the original exact wording.
(iii) “I did characterize General Miyanda as a significant player in the 1996 amendments”: this is also an addition and changes the original wording.
(iv) “I agree with him (Miyanda) that it is difficult to, in some instances, attribute actions of the State to any one individual”. : This is a fabrication and I deny that I said this for him to ‘agree’ with me.
(v) “In that article, I (Munshya) mentioned three most important and most senior leaders of the MMD and our country who spearheaded those amendments: Chiluba, Miyanda and Sata”: where did he say this in the original article? Nowhere!
(vi) “Today, it is Miyanda we are demanding answers from”: another forgery; nowhere did he ask me to answer any questions.
(vii) “…the General seems to be having a problem with the fact that I feature, in my column, ideas that he has previously promoted. Democracy is a repetition of ideas. Pluralism flourishes in the free exchange of similar if not identical thoughts. Both the General and me agree that Justice Chibesakunda ‘kuya bebele’. Miyanda should not fault me for this”: he is answering his own questions as I did not refer to his column and I did not fault him on his democracy crusade but on ignoring my own little contributions in national issues, which he has now done and for which I thank him.
(viii) “Challenging the story told by Brigadier General Godfrey Kenneth Miyanda is a legitimate practice in our democracy”: which story is this that he is challenging? I am not aware of this and I believe that even many readers do not know what he is referring to.
(ix) “At the centre of his (Miyanda’s) objection is the story or history he wants us to believe or to write”: really? Which history and what is he referring to?
Munshya wa Munshya has faulted me for “cherry-picking” history. But according to his own definition and I quote “History is a story or specifically, it is a collection of stories”. So why should I not pick a cherry from the collection? He wants to divert attention by generalising and ignoring the exact words he published. I reject the unsubstantiated insinuation that I suppressed or doctored evidence in my response. It is him who must be estopped from doctoring published statements. Had he written what he has now written I would have had no cause to object. I did not write any history but objected to the convenient misleading characterisation which he has left as a permanent record to be relied on by researchers at home and abroad. This is why I characterised him as careless and casual. See now who is cherry-picking!
Follow this history he has published, I quote him: “For avoidance of doubt, as at 2013, Sata has spent more time in government serving with Miyanda (1991-2001) than with Kabimba (2012-2013) or Guy Scott (1991-1995 & 2011-2013). This is a historical fact.”: Munshya wa Munshya’s historical facts are skewed; let him carry out further research and he will discover how long President Sata has been associated with Guy Scott and Winter Kabimba. His history is wrong yet he is imposing it on us. Further I have not been Mr Sata’s boss as he alleges.
He has accused me of wanting to escape from responsibility. This is slander disguised as an opinion. It is him again who is imposing his own version of our history. I object and deny hiding behind collective responsibility. There is in the public domain, my very clear acceptance of the collective actions we took but for posterity I have a right and a duty to state or correct facts when this is necessary and/or legally possible.
OPINIONS (some of them): I have just been informed that Munshya wa Munshya is a lawyer – good for him. If so my humble advice is that he must base his opinions and assumptions on real facts and not those he makes up. Otherwise he will always go astray with his analyses.
If there is to be judgement let it NOT be a generalised one in 2023 but it should be now on Munshya was Munshya’s forged response of 4th October 2013!
[4TH OCTOBER 2013]