The ruling Patriotic Front Party lost Parliamentary bye election in Roan Constituency to the opposition NDC due to lack of planning.The factors that contributed to the loss are outlined below:
1. Roan Constituency is comprised of Roan and Mpatamato townships including the surrounding areas like Kawama,Kasununu,Mpata Hills,Maposa area etcetera.
But of all these places,the main areas are mine residentials which are Mpatamato and Roan townships.The people of Roan Constituency can only be satisfied if their Mine demands are sorted out i.e. the opening of 28 Shaft,18 Shaft and 14 Shaft.Today if you go to Roan Constituency, you’ll find a lot of unemployed people because of the closures of these mine shafts, and the residents have attributed all this to the government under the leadership of the Partriotic Front Party.
2. After RAMCOZ left Luanshya Mine,miners have not been paid their NAPSA contribution because the company was not re-emiting funds to NAPSA and this has added more salt to the wounds of Mpatamato and Roan township residents such that even their efforts to these monies through the help of the government have not yielded any fruits.And due to this fact one can understand their decision of not voting for the PF candidate.
Mpelembe Drilling Company workers from the time ZCCM was privatised and their contracts were terminated,their terminal benefits have not been paid up to now.Most of these workers have since died and their families have remained destitutes including those that are alive now and their efforts to collect this money has been proved futile.The Partriotic Front Party during the campaigns used a lot of money which they dished out to everyone in the constituency and this angered the residents and created an impression that money is there but the government opted to dish it out for campaigns than giving them their benefits.Similarly we have ZAMPOST workers and council workers who reside in the same constituency who were not paid salaries for some months and yet government was seen spending carelessly during campaigns instead of paying their salaries and tomorrow you expected them to vote for the PF candidate.
3. The closure of the Copperbelt University in Kitwe which is roughly 50 Km from Luanshya where bye elections were to be held few days before closing also had an impact as most of those students reside in Roan and Mpatamato townships including their friends and relatives and you expected them to vote for the PF candidate,it was impossible
4. The candidate the Partriotic Front Party adopted is not a resident of Roan Constituency and did not even vote for himself.We had a lot of aspiring candidates who attended interviews for adoptions and were the
Indigenous residents of Roan and Mpatamato townships but the PF Secretariat opted to ignore all this and went for a wrong candidate who has been quiet from the time he was appointed Luanshya District Commissioner.He only resurfaced upon hearing the bye election was around the corner.People at the grassroots didn’t know him and it was difficult to sell him.
5. The local structures starting from sections,branches,wards,constituency and district were sidelined and the Partriotic Front Party brought new faces from different towns to come and campaign and talk to the people of Roan Constituency.People rejected them because these were strange faces which came from Kalulushi,Mufulira,Kitwe,Ndola and other copperbelt towns.The mandate was supposed to be given to the local structures who understands what exactly their fellow residents are going through but this did not happen.Even foot soldiers were not even given food as they were told the food was meant for visitors from other towns and our party expected the local campaign teams to work with empty stomachs and win an election,it was not possible.
These are some of my personal observations on what contributed to the loss of an election in Luanshya.
Right now all the Councillors in Roan Constituency especially Mpatamato and Roan townships are all in support of the opposition NDC/UPND and come 2021 if the Partriotic Front Party will not retrospect and do something to impress our people,all the ward councillors will be won by the opposition including the Mayoral office.
So the best time for the ruling party is now to give the people of Roan Constituency and Luanshya in general whatever they promised them during the last bye election campaigns so that we can restore confidence in our people.If we fail to do that,there is no single seat that will be own by PF in 2021.
Iam 100% PF and i love the party.Iam aware that there are some people giving President Edgar Chagwa Lungu and the Secretariat false information about what is happening on the ground.These are the same people who are destroying the image and the popularity of the party and must be removed from the party structures because they have failed to perform.
Mpatamato Resident and PF Sympathiser