Still reeling from a devastating Lusaka mayoral defeat election, UPND should begin the process of charting the direction of their party in the Edgar Igwe Lungu era.
UPND politicians should begin jockeying for control of the party’s future. While the top UPND leadership from councilor to mayoral elections all backed losers, to survive they should start pushing for a serious shift in the party’s policy positions, financial resources towards elections and grassroots organizing to focus more on a populist message that could win back UPND voters who aren’t excited about the candidates imposed on them.
Sampa won not because he is likable but because of the PF brand that Lungu’s grassroots machine has cemented into the imagination of cadre youths. Anyone standing on PF ticket will win. To use the analogy of soccer, PF is topping the ZPL – Zambia Premier League.
Lungu is comfortably in charge of PF and PF have bought into his leadership. Politics like soccer is about winning championship titles, so far Lungu is delivering!
The soul searching should take a more urgent tone, by some party activists and politicians to begin advocating for changes in leadership. For UPND to stay relevant they need to stop attacking Lungu and all he stands for ‘eSwatini’, fire trucks and Mukula, but engage voters in a much more extensive conversation about how the party has failed to win big league elections in metropolitan cities (Chilanga and Lusaka), where tribal politics can’t used as an excuse anymore.
UPND need to find new most visible faces in politics, to make winning elections a far more influential urgency and clearing the way for new blood. When Edgar Igwe Lungu took over PF from after Sata’s death, he retired veterans like Dr. Scott, Kambwili and promoted rank and file members like Mwila, Mumbi goddess Phiri, Jean Kapata and Lusambo, who are the now the face of PF. Most people including myself thought ‘Igwe’was experimenting too much by retiring Sata’s loyalists, but the gamble has paid off. HH-GBM ticket has lost too many elections they should have won to continue being the face of UPND, hoping for a knockout punch in 2021.
Basically, you can say it’s the PF women like Mumbi and Kapata who are sinking the GBM-HH machine in metropolitan cities. Where are the alternative UPND powerful women hitters?
UPND rebrand like Lungu did PF, shakeup the face of the party and adapt or else face extinction and irrelevance during the elections.
If you can’t win elections then quit politics and find something more valuable to do. If you can’t figure out how to win elections how else are you going to figure out how to govern?