FREEDOM Sikazwe says he has noted that there are people within the PF who claim to have made a name in politics yet they have excelled in soiling that acclaimed popularity.
He warns members accusing others of having caused the PF loss that, “as long as people take that route then it will be very difficult for us to recover or we might even fail to recover.”
The former presidential affairs minister says he did the very best he could during the last presidential and general elections to keep the party in power.
“So, what is important kusumina (to accept). Nga wayeba ati naficitika ninshi naficitika (if you convince yourself that things have happened then they have happened) then you say where did we go wrong; that’s where we are. Any reasonable person should first reflect that, ‘what has happened?’ The party has a bright future if only we can handle the current situation; the current situation is what is threatening some of us. The challenge we have is where some people don’t seem to have accepted the fact that we lost,” notes Sikazwe. “What has happened, genuinely all of us are just supposed to accept defeat and say, ‘yes, we have lost but what is the way forward now’. We want to rebrand and ensure that this party continues, but for as long as we have people who seem to have hidden agendas nokulanda ati aba naba tatulebafwaya, ebalengele tuluse; nimwe mwacitile ifi: ba youth,
others, awe nimwe bene ba MP. Elyo kuli na abalelanda ati ‘you were very stingy’, tamwalepelako abanenu impiya…such comments eyaletinya bamo; icishele kwikala tondolo ati awe abalefwaya ukulanda kabalelanda tumone uko twalapela. (and saying that this one and this one we do not want them, they made us lose. You did this: the youth, others, no it’s you the MP. And there are others who are saying that, ‘you were very stingy’, you were not sharing money with your colleagues… such comments are what is scaring some people. Hence, they have resorted to keeping quiet that, no, let those who want to talk do so and we shall see how far it goes). But I am telling you, this party has got a future even bouncing back. We can make history by bouncing back if only people can accept that yes, we have lost. And, again, we still have the zeal to bounce back and we can bounce back; the party can bounce back. …So, we are saying to our colleagues, it’s time we teamed up and ensured that we moved as a team. But now if we can start fighting within ourselves ninshi capwa (then that’s the end). A divided house can never rule. A divided house can never progress. So, that is the challenge we have.”
The Patriotic Front hierarchy must heed Freedom’s advice. It seems he has had time to reflect and what he is saying is from pure hindsight! The PF must reconcile with itself and pull in one direction if they are to stand a chance of survival and remain relevant politically and otherwise.
As Martin Luther King Jr advised, “We must learn to live together as brothers and sisters or perish together as fools.”
Indeed, after that deafening defeat, it was expected that the vanquished PF would take a tactical back withdraw and reflect on what led to their loss. UPND may have beaten the PF at their game but surely that loss should not result in the immediate demise of the former ruling party. PF still have a commanding presence in Parliament and in districts. They control a lot of councils and still have structures on the ground. But they needed to have sat back, conduct a postmortem and embark on a transparent but honest rebuilding process. Otherwise, they’ll wipe themselves out of the political landscape. In fact, rebranding the PF won’t be an easy undertaking if the party refuses to conduct an honest SWOT analysis.
And Freedom is right when he warns that, “A divided house can never rule. A divided house can never progress. So, that is the challenge we have.”
John Trapp warned that, “Unity without verity is no better than conspiracy.”
PF have a mountain to climb. They ought to know that they cannot overcome the rapids if their captain and sailors on the boat are not manoeuvring in one direction.
Mahatma Gandhi noted that, “Unity to be real must stand the severest strain without breaking.”
While Ralph Waldo Emerson noted that, “The reason why the world lacks unity, and lies broken and in heaps, is because man is disunited with himself.”
PF were already in disarray ahead of the polls. The boat had serious cracks all over and Edgar Lungu’s stewardship, both at national and party, level didn’t help matters. He rocked the boat before it headed for the high seas. The final nail in the coffin was Edgar’s failure to conduct free elections for central committee members ahead of the August 12 presidential and general elections. This led the PF to enter the general polls already haggard – totally deaf, blind and mute! Fissures were there for all to see but Edgar and his ‘yes’ men deliberately wore blinders. Today, they stand at sixes and sevens to correct their huge blunder unfortunately when they’re at their weakest!
Heed Freedom or sink completely!