The Vice President Dr. Guy Scott may not have meant it seriously but the damage has been done and must be corrected for the sake of the party.
The statement by the Vice President suggesting that the Patriotic Front had an A team made up of the President, Vice President and Mr. Wynter Kabimba was a damning indictment of the absence of cohesion and negation of the Patriotic Front as a party guided by the tenets of democracy.
The suggestion that the three people were above the membership of the party, takes away from any semblance of democratic credentials because every party must have the capacity to empower the membership to vote out incompetent and non performing leadership, this should include the President, Vice President and indeed secretary general of the party. In a democracy there are no sacred cows.
It is true that the Patriotic Front was formed at the initiative of its President Mr. Michael Sata, but it is not true that he is not accountable to the membership. By inviting general membership into the party he gave away sole control to control by the constitution and manifesto.
It is a legal requirement for any registered society to provide for periodic elections to be held in order to elect the leadership. Most constitutions also provide for extra ordinary General meetings at which such matters as leadership change can be discussed.
More importantly a party is by definition a collective of like minded people who are united in a cause, led by a leadership that is elected and not imposed.
It is difficult to see how in a democratic environment three members, however senior, can assume to be above the general membership insular and totally un-accountable and beyond the reach and control of the members. This is not a democracy.
It is also a fact that some of the senior members in the party were never subjected to an election, they were instead handpicked, an issue that has proved highly contentious within the party.
That is why the remarks by the Vice President have not been received very kindly by the ordinary membership including the Central Committee of the Party who now feel downgraded and un-appreciated.
There is no doubt that without the collective effort of all Party members who criss-crossed the country and offered resources in various forms the party would not have won. The victory was the result of collective effort of both ordinary and senior members who took tremendous personal and financial risks to support a party that was in opposition and could have easily lost, thereby putting themselves and their business interests at risk.
While it is also true that the President, Vice President and Wynter are friends, it is not true that the party belongs to them. On registration the party assumed a legal personality capable of suing and being sued. They therefore cannot be permanent and immovable features of the party.
It follows therefore that the Party should as a matter of urgency seek to establish its credentials as a democratic institution in which all members have a say and more importantly that it is a party in which collective rather than individual preferences for leadership will be respected.
In a party there is nothing like street kids classification of party membership. All members are equal and can even vote out the president.