Friday, 8 November 2013

Only The Truth Shall Set the Patriotic Front Free

the ruling patriotic front is cracking into pieces as the factions in the party violently attack each with pangas, exposing the sins of the leaders at the centre of the divisions in the party. but the party top leadership is in self denial. vice president guy scott chooses not to accept the truth about individual and collective sins of violence in the ruling Party

By Nyalubinge Ngwende
The Vice President Guy Scott is in denial. President Michael Sata continues fiddling while his political party is ablaze with violence that defies logic.

When faced with the question in parliament of the violence in the Patriotic Front, Zambia’s vice president Scott wished he was on the other side of politics other than the ruling party. Then he would have tried more to be truthful about the individual and collective sins that caused cadres from the two factions that have emerged in the ruling party to fight street battles with pangas, leading to the death of at least one cadre and leaving several others maimed with severed hands and deep head cuts. Unfortunately he belongs to the ruling
party that is so violently divided.

And instead of being remorseful about the deep divisions in the ruling party, to which Scott himself has given classes of A-Team and B-Team, he laboured with nonsensical excuses that the violence of PF members against each other is not a new phenomenon. We say nonsensical because he is not being honest to himself. He suggests that the previous ruling party faced the equal measures of violence and those people who used to commit atrocities on other party members in the MMD or maybe UNIP are now associating themselves with the ruling party and brought with them their bad habits.

Home Affairs minister and chairman for the PF disciplinary committee Edgar Lungu is also bluffing: saying the problems the PF is going through are normal teething problems, with some people who are not PF, wanting to wear the party regalia and foment trouble.

These statements are not true. They present a terrible weakness of leadership failure to face the truth and boldly and honestly settle glary political-in-house implosion.

Guy Scott knows that he has made false observations about the divisions in the ruling party. 

Not long ago when Chikwelete, one of the party members who was at the centre of leadership controversy for Lusaka district apologised for ‘insulting’ PF secretary general Wynter Kabimba, Scott came out cheering that the confusions in the PF were over. Scott must have known that Chikwelete was just a disciple in one of the two factions that have emerged due to differences between Wynter Kabimba and Godfrey Bwalya Mwamba (GBM), two senior members of the ruling party. Each group has sympathisers within the party’s central committee and farther down the unruly youths of the party. No measure has been taken to establish real reconciliation between these factions from the top to the root—and the street skirmishes are evidence to this.

Vice President: Guy Scott
But he, Scott, chose to overlook this truth. There is also no truth in his statement that the violence being experienced in PF is a spill over phenomena inherited from previous ruling political parties—UNIP (United Independence Party) and MMD (Movement for Multiparty Democracy).

We know that UNIP cadres fought over who should take over the reins of the party after Kenneth Kaunda lost power to Frederick Chiluba of the MMD in 1991.  But never at anytime did we witness cadres heavily armed with pangas amputating each other on the streets.  Scott should give us the pictures of UNIP members hacking each other with pangas if we are to agree with his theory he is using to defend the murderous violence that has engulfed the ruling Patriotic Front.

We know the Movement for Multiparty Democracy (MMD) was violent, but this was at the time of Michael Chilufya Sata as the party’s secretary general. We saw youths being mobilised to block and beat up senior members who wanted to challenge Frederick Chiluba as party President at conventions. We also did not see pangas. We first saw pangas become popular in political violence when Sata, as MMD national secretary, commandeered a park of brutes in Chawama during parliamentary by-elections. This is after Sata had caused senior members of the MMD leave and went to form the Forum for Democracy and Development (FDD). FDD won that by-election, which remains blotted with blood most political pundits blamed on Sata.

If under Levy Mwanawasa (MHSRIP) and Rupiah Banda, the MMD saw almost negligible violence mostly with people dragging each other in jackets or exchanging slaps, then who should we say was an architect of the violence in the MMD similar to what we have seen happen among PF members just three days ago? Water follows the stream; and the violent cadres who were in UNIP, MMD and now PF must be doing the same. Which or who is that stream? 

Guy Scott must not forget that during the run to 2011 elections campaigns, Wynter Kabimba had instructed PF cadres to hit back on opposition members who would provoke them. What next, Zambians saw in front of their televisions pictures of PF cadres sharpening pangas on the tarmac close to the Freedom Statue?

Wynter is violent. And if Guy Scott tells us that this violence is coming from previous regimes, he is putting his own boss, President Sata, in the limelight of being guilty. Sata’s has saved in both previous regimes under UNIP and MMD. Therefore if UNIP and MMD were violent, then Sata’s political career is chequered with intimidation and violence.  

Something is blinding Guy Scott and all of the PF top leadership to this truth and want to find scapegoats to blame for their own problems. 

Martin Luther King Jr. had a better description for the problem that has inflicted the Patriotic Front leadership and its political party. “Rationalisation and incessant search for scapegoats are the psychological cataracts that blind us [Patriotic Front] to our [its] individual and collective sins. 

President Sata has never known to reconcile people! His management of problems end up in a break up. We saw it in MMD over the third term debate, we saw it during the PF-UPND pact and now we may be seeing the so called B-Team led by Godfrey Mwamba being ostracised from the ruling party because the A-team to which Wynter belongs is untouchable.

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