PF member McDonald Mulongoti says certain “myopic old members” in the ruling party are oblivious to the fact that politics is about numbers.
He is urging all those in the PF structures to be more receptive to new members.
Under the PF ticket, Mulongoti served as Chingola mayor from to 2010 to 2011.
He at some point left the PF and joined the opposition Rainbow Party where he served as national chairperson for youth affairs.
Mulongoti ditched the Rainbow Party and re-joined the PF in May 2018.
In a statement from Chingola on Wednesday, Mulongoti observed that some PF members in the structures seemed: “to have formed cartels to frustrate and block new entrants from getting positions within the party.”
“It is almost insurmountable to be elected to the structures even if the Central Committee has cleared your admission or re-admission to the party, as it were,” Mulongoti stated.
“By and large, certain myopic old members are oblivious to the fact that politics is about numbers. Sometimes those independent candidates who go through during general elections are people who get rejected in [the] party yet popular with the electorates. We should draw good lessons from such experiences so that the same does not recur in future.”
He added that to his knowledge, being new in the party did not really matter, as long as someone was valuable.
Mulongoti said for the most part, resource and membership mobilisation were the two cardinal factors in politics at whatever level.
“Animosity, which is an affront to the ideals and principles of our party, must be discouraged at all costs. Suffice to say that, our political actions will either translate to electoral victory or loss. This simply means that if your actions are treacherous to the detriment of the party, you will eventually be exposed,” Mulongoti stated.
“I like the good virtue I see in His Excellency President Dr Edgar Chagwa Lungu; he is very receptive even to people who once criticised him or the party. The PF Central Committee and the secretariat, through the secretary general Hon Davies Mwila, replicate such tolerance as well.”
He, however, noted that the situation is not the same at the PF’s lower organs, where old members: “treat new members like threats or enemies a situation which inhibits membership growth.”
“For argument’s sake, look at Lusaka mayor His Worship councillor Miles Sampa, former PF secretary general and Nchanga member of parliament Hon Charles Chimumbwa and Hon Geoffrey Bwalya Mwamba (GBM); despite them having left the party at some point, they still occupy important party positions because of proven loyalty and capability to perform. That is exactly the way it should be!” Mulongoti stated.
“Surprisingly though, in certain districts, especially on the Copperbelt Province, you must be lucky to be elected even at section level, your influence in society notwithstanding. What I am saying is true and meant for the well-being of the party.”
Against that backdrop, Mulongoti is asking Mwila to consider his ‘humble revelation’ and that from now on, “we begin to attract more new members countrywide.”
“I know that intra-party elections have been held across the country in accordance with democratic tenets, leading to normalcy restoration where wrangles persistently ensued,” stated Mulongoti.