APC/PMDC; an alliance in difficult a situation
Following recent lashings at the ruling APC by the Chairman of the Peoples Movement for Democratic Change (PMDC) Mohamed Bangura, I am deliberately bringing back an article I wrote some months back, regarding the marriage between the APC and PMDC, in which I attempted to state that the APC should for one, not attempt to be ungrateful to the PMDC, taking into account the role played by the PMDC for the APC victory.
It would appear the APC are forgetting where they hit their toes, leading to them, falling on the ground literally. They should go to the drawing board, look at the concerns of the PMDC and think of ways of addressing some, even if not all of them. The APC should not dump the PMDC for obvious reasons…
It may sound as a political achievement for some political parties, especially the SLPP who may still not be happy for the PMDC’s formation, to see that party moving in the direction of falling apart. This is not the case as a matter of fact but I am just sounding the alarm bell. The creation of the PMDC led to some form of political tsunami for the SLPP. The party was democratically but brutally removed from power in 2007 as a result of the political alliance that was formed between the PMDC and the APC
Not only that even the then presidential material for the SLPP was far from being marketable from the perspective of public relations. Berewa was going to be a good technocrat but not a good politician. This he exhibited immediately he was elected as Leader of the SLPP in Makeni where he lashed at those who were opposed to his leadership venture. JB Dauda, then Finance Minister was fired immediately after the Makeni convention for he had also contested for the party leadership. Many others were not happy over the election of Berewa and so when Margai decided to form the PMDC they saw it as an alternative to voting Berewa.
The PMDC was very instrumental in the victory that was got by Ernest Koroma. It is crystal clear that the people of this country also wanted a change at the time and that Ernest Koroma was a liked material by the electorate but his success was coupled with the fact that Margai, who was and is still a household name in the county politically, supported Ernest.
Granted that the people wanted a change, it was also a Â realty that the SLPP was seen as a party meant for the elitists and from the view point of party politics, the vote of the elitist is as equal and important as that of the common man in the street. That was also a major difference between the APC and the SLPP and a factor that led to the defeat of the SLPP. When the educated class would be busy at home reading books and writing articles on the failures of the APC, the common man would be busy singing political songs that have the potential of wooing more people into the fold of the APC.
But some issues must be looked at critically as related to the role of the current APC government in the survival of the PMDC. I have stated earlier that the PMDC was and is still instrumental in the political survival of the APC and President Ernest Bai Koroma. And as such, both parties should be seen complementing the effort of each other. But practically this sounds not to be the situation.
It should be underscored that it is only with a divided south-east that the APC shall continue to stay in power. We saw how the PMDC divided the southeast thus leading to the fall of the SLPP. And it is only when this trend continues that the APC should be thinking of seeing anything like political longevity. But if the APC does not work behind the curtain to ensure, the PMDC is intact and politically strong, then the SLPP well capitalize on this and work on ensuring that they win future elections. Generally, all those resigning today from the PMDC are bound to getting back to the SLPP for it was out of frustration that they left the SLPP to join the PMDC.
This is more the reason the APC should not allow the PMDC to disintegrate, if it is to continue enjoying the confidence of the electorate. A disintegrated PMDC would mean a united SLPP and this has the potential for the APC not to gain the attention of people in the south-east. Look at Bonthe! See how Margai and the PMDC succeeded in luring people in that district into voting Ernest Bai Koroma! People in Bonthe did not vote APC because they liked the APC; they did so because their political godfather, Charles Margai had asked them to do so. And we observed that following the runoff, there was a protest vote in Bonthe against the SLPP.
And if the APC fails to help the PMDC in consideration their strength in places like Bonthe, Kenema and Bo, then it would be disastrous for the ruling party. In this day and age, it is just too impossible for the APC to downplay the role that the PMDC may have to play come 2012 elections.Â When the Kabbah led government of 2006 came to power, it had the support of PDP, and the SLPP in their minds, thought it was a political success for them, ands as such, they had to literally put the PDP in the gallows where it was hanged and died politically. That was the end of the PDP. And the SLPP saw the effect of that!!-they were not trusted by any political party to give support to them.
Now I definitely know the APC would not want to face the wrath of the people of this country; I know they would want to continue to stay in power, and I know President Koroma would want to continue having a good political relation ship with the PMDC. But ensuring all of these is based on the simple fact that, the APC should also been seen helping the PMDC not to disintegrate as a party. The resignations that had erupted within the PMDC in recent times are politically unhealthy for the PMDC. Â A political catastrophe within the PMDC would to an extent have an adverse effect on the survival of the APC.
I have no doubt that President Koroma still enjoys the confidence of the people of this country. And he definitely shall be elected come 2012, but the APC should be thinking of it survival after 2012. In politics, your projections should not be short sighted and this is what the APC should begin to think of.Â A divided PMDC will not tell well for the APC if the APC wants to get the support of the southeast, especially areas like Bonthe, Bo and other PMDC strongholds.
And it would be wrong for the APC to believe the SLPP have died and will never resurrect. This is politics and African politics for that matter. Contemporary African politics indicates that people will vote you out when you fail to perform, and although President Koroma has been making some political goals, there is every need for him to ensure the PMDC does not die politically or else, we are seeing the coming into political prominence of the SLPP.
If the APC is to rejoice over a possible divided PMDC, then it is not only doing so at the detriment of it also falling, but at the detriment of political cohesion and unity between the APC and the PMDC. The APC must have learnt lessons from what occurred between the Minister of Lands and Edi Turay and a host of other issues.Â The PMDC still has a base in the south and the east and come 2012, the APC would want to rely on this party for survival.
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