By George Sichula
I have noticed that the Luapula and Western ward bye-elections have sparked debate on social media on who is more popular than the other. Firstly, the PF cannot use these election results as a measure of their popularity. It’s a cheap way of thinking. These elections are not a good litmus paper for the PF. It is wrong for them to conclude that they are doing well and that 2021 will be a walkover.
It’s like fighting with someone when you know that you have put poison in his water to weaken him for your advantage. For instance, the PF has been spending very huge sums of money in almost every election. Just in Chienge, I saw more than ten 4 ×4 vehicles without number plates, queuing people up to give them bribes.
It’s like giving money to a girl who doesn’t love you to accept your proposal no matter how ugly you look. I am sure In their hearts the PF knows that they are using house money car principles to buy votes. Winning bye-elections by the incumbent Government is not new in Zambia, we saw it in the MMD between 2009 and 2010. That time everyone believed that MMD was popular and kept winning. It seems history is about to repeat itself.
The UPND and the PF have been in existence for more than 18 years. NDC has only been in existence for 3 years but still able to compete in an election evenly. Let me analyze these elections for someone struggling to pick something out of them. First and foremost, I want you to know that the PF is worried that their so-called strongholds are under siege by the opposition. UPND never used to gun such numbers in Luapula, but today its a totally different ball game. There is a serious drop in terms of support for the PF.
When a party in Government starts using money and material things in their perceived strongholds, then their days are numbered. In Zambia, leaders use the money to prolong their stay in power like any other African countries. Winning elections while in Government has a psychological benefit to show that they are still loved and popular when in fact not. You will notice a series of bye-elections in the western province, the reason is simple, there is hunger which the PF has taken advantage of. Things are very clear that their former strongholds have been infiltrated by the opposition especially the; Northen block, Copperbelt and Lusaka. The PF members are gripped in terrible fear of losing the 2021 elections.
I do not want to comment on the Alliance because people have judged for themselves, otherwise, our focus as a party is to grow our base everywhere. The NDC is a very strategic party with a lot of advantages for next year’s tripartite elections. Underate the NDC at your own peril.
The Author is the Opposition NDC Copperbelt provincial Chairman