Fred M’membe



It’s unwise, and probably suicidal, for any of our opposition colleagues who have congregated in UKA to start treating us as if we are their enemies and throwing all sorts of insinuations against us for not joining their alliance.

It will be messy if we start to hit back in self-defense, which we are very capable of doing.

We have openly defended their right to congregate in an alliance.

We have also privately and publicly explained our party processes for making a decision about joining an alliance. Whereas as our colleagues can decide to take their parties in an alliance without the express consent of their members in a Congress or Convention resolution, we have to seek such authority.

Most importantly, we are very much aware of the schemings and manoeuvring going on in this alliance, which we wouldn’t like to subject ourselves to for now. There are many weaknesses in this whole project that shouldn’t be turned into virtues.

Let us not deceive ourselves or allow ourselves to be deceived, that an opposition alliance, in itself or by itself, guarantees us electoral victory. Yes, if well conceived and organised, it will certainly increase our chances of electoral victory, but it doesn’t guarantee us victory in itself or by itself.

The UDA alliance of 2006, involving UPND, FDD, UNIP, and others, failed to defeat MMD. PF, which was not part of UDA, actually performed better. The UDA partners went into the 2006 elections with a total of 74 parliamentary seats (UPND 49, FDD 13, and UNIP 12) obtained from 2001 elections. PF went into that election with 2 parliamentary seats (one from the 2001 elections and the other from a by-election). PF came out of the 2006 elections with 43 parliamentary seats and UDA with a total of 26. Michael Sata , the PF presidential candidate, came second, beating the UDA presidential candidate into third position.

In 2009, UPND and PF got into an alliance, but that pact broke down over who should be the presidential candidate. PF and Michael Sata went on to win the 2011 elections on its own.

We are bringing out this background not to discourage opposition electoral alliances but to remove illusions and unjustifiable excitement that can be detrimental to the success of such alliances.

Let’s do things the right way even if this calls for our greatest efforts. There is no reason to be unscrupulous about anything if your intentions are noble. We are all seeking unity of purpose and trust, but this will not happen if the scheming, manoeuvring, and insinuations against us continues.

Let’s respect others, their rights, and their choices.

Fred M’membe
President of the Socialist Party


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