By JOHN KOMBE
By-elections in Zambia have never been a good ‘litmus test’ for political popularity and hence the UPND must not be deceived by its expected successes in by elections, Golden Party Zambia president, Jackson Silavwe, has said.
In an interview, Mr. Silavwe observed that ruling political parties in Zambia usually have an upper hand in by-elections and hence the deception that they are popular. He was commenting on the excitement in the UPND Alliance camp over the failure by the former ruling party, Patriotic Front (PF) to field a candidate in the pending Lumbo ward by-elections in Mongu municipal council in Western Province.
He said that ruling political parties have been victorious in most by-elections from the time of the MMD to date.
He said that this can be attributed to many factors that do not have a bearing on the reality on the ground. He pointed out that even the UPND was losing by-elections just months before it won the August 12, 2022 general elections.
Mr. Silavwe therefore advised the UPND Alliance to concentrate on delivering according to the aspirations of the people as opposed to politicking.
He argued that by-elections were a waste of time and resources and must be minimized if not squashed.
He said that political leadership must not be prioritised at the expense of development.
The Golden party president further noted that President Hakainde Hichilema has severally aired his dislike for by-elections. He said that his party will support this idea if it is advanced. He therefore urged the UPND to work at bringing by-elections to an end so that the nation rids itself of excessive politicking.