THE Socialist Party says the reign of the Patriotic Front has been nothing more than a walk of shame.
Socialist Party Member of the Central Committee Faston Mwale says life under the PF has been a harrowing experience.
He said it is becoming increasingly apparent that the Patriotic Front’s days in government are numbered.
“The party faces a brick-wall in next year’s general elections. This assertion is not a mere conjecture but is an objective fact. The political leadership that emerged from the “dust and ashes” of the late Michael Chilufya Sata is unarguably the most inept and poorly visioned squad of opportunists ever reckoned in the country’s political history. Since 2016, Zambia’s economy has not been growing, while poverty has been on the rise attended by a simultaneous decline in economic governance. Under the Patriotic Front, the masses of our people have been subjected to the most atrocious forms of poverty, hunger, inequality and extreme injustice,” Mwale said. “Against this backdrop, citizens across the country have intensified the search for a leadership that is endowed with egalitarian ideas for justice, equity and peace to take over state power. Within the framework of this preoccupation, Fred M’membe is progressively becoming the people’s ultimate choice for the republican presidency in the upcoming general elections. Granted with a remarkable mix of qualities, namely; steadfastness, courage, a principled stand for justice, kindness, incorruptibility and a robust passion for the marginalized – Dr Fred M’membe fits pretty well with the people’s growing aspirations for a credible leadership to take over the reigns of government next year. A leader who is not motivated by material goods nor is driven by a lust for power and prestige is what Zambians need for a president.”
He said the message of revolutionary politics that guarantees the highest possibility for all round development resonates well with the masses.
“Next year’s general elections present a rare and historic chance to Zambians to transform Zambia into a socialist state in which justice, equity and peace are fundamental cornerstones for building a just, fair and humane society for all without exception,” Mwale said.
He noted that for over three decades, Zambia had persistently suffered a serious plague of unbridled corruption, cronyism, bad governance and a general leadership failure.
“A small, greedy, parasitic elite that assumed state power after the unfortunate demise of the late Michael Sata is directly responsible for the long list of irreparable calamities that have afflicted the masses of our people across the country. The crippling debt that has submerged us into a crisis is a consequence of sheer arrogance of the ‘know it all leadership’,” Mwale said. “Despite receiving ample warnings against the increasing debt burden from its own economists and opposition parties, as well as from external advisers – the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other cooperating partners, government remained pompous. Today, reality has dawned upon them, the pomposity is gone and they are like a ‘soaked cat’. As of 2018, Zambia’s external debt had reached close to 40 per cent of GDP, while domestic debt and arrears represented some 23 per cent. Domestic debt is a considerable problem and leads to high interest rates and to out-crowding of local entrepreneurs’ access to credit.” He said the Patriotic Front has not only reneged on its call to better the lives of the toiling masses but it has also disconnected itself from the people’s daily struggles for water, improved sanitation facilities, decent housing, food, shelter, education, health and employment.
“The reign of the Patriotic Front has been nothing more than a walk of shame. This is the party that was massively supported by the struggling masses who sought a way out of the capitalist quagmire. But today the story is different,” Mwale noted. “The people want the PF out of government. It has turned its back against the very people who supported it. Dishing out sums of money, mealie meal, groceries and many other goodies to lure prospective voters will not help the party to re-build its severely ruined political image. The mess caused by fiscal indiscipline, exacerbated by unrestrained looting of state resources is too big to be remedied through tokens of gifts. While the leaders in government have become filthy rich, more than half the population has been consigned to the most inferior means of subsistence. Arising from this inequality, Zambia today presents the clearest picture of the development of class contradictions.”
He said nearly all facets of “our lives illustrate the class character of our society: churches, hospitals, schools, shops and even burial sites are not spared from class distinctions that do not make sense at all”.
“If at all there is any lesson to be learnt from the governance style of the Patriotic Front, it is that bequeathing state power to big-headed neoliberal capitalist elements is no cheap mistake. We ought to learn that capitalism is capitalism. It is not a system for the poor. No matter how much we grovel before it, it is a system that ‘soaks’ the poor to enrich the rich,” Mwale said. “For the struggling masses, only one road is open to them – socialism. The working masses must not only agonize over the miserable conditions they have been subjected to by the lackeys of capital, but they must also organise and ready themselves for progressive social change. Take heed, a disorganised mass of the working class is nothing else than a raw material for capitalist exploitation.”
He said the working class must never again subcontract the revolutionary struggle to the capitalist class.
“This would be a grave mistake. It must fight for its own liberation,” said Mwale.