Thursday, June 21, 2007

Challenge me at convention, Sata urges PF members

Challenge me at convention, Sata urges PF members
By Brighton Phiri
Thursday June 21, 2007 [04:00]

OPPOSITION Patriotic Front (PF) president Michael Sata has invited all aspiring candidates for the party presidency to challenge him during the party’s next general conference. According to PF sources, Sata on May 16 wrote a memo to all members of the central committee asking them to consider approving his proposal that the party begin to receive applications from all would-be candidates for party presidency, central committee, members of parliament in all the 150 parliamentary constituencies and councillors.

"I am in receipt of president Sata's letter and we are studying his proposals," said one of the PF central committee members who declined to give full details of the letter.

In his letter obtained by The Post, Sata stated that it was important for the party to put its house in order as it was preparing for the general conference.

"As the party is preparing for the general conference, it is important we put our house in order. I am proposing that we call the party general elections beginning with sections, branches, wards and constituencies, which should be accomplished within 60 days to be supervised by the elections committee," read Sata's letter in part. "In 2004, the party started a general party elections, the programme did not go well because some of the people we entrusted to create structures went in the field with selfish intentions. Instead of accomplishing the programme, all they managed was to establish themselves, at the end of the programme they personally benefited to be elected to Parliament leaving the party structures divided. I am, therefore, proposing that we invite applications from all who would like to aspire as president of the party at the general conference, members of parliament and all aspiring candidates in 1,358 wards."

Sata stated that his proposed measures would ensure that all would-be leaders at all levels were made accountable to the primary organs of the party.

He observed that PF was not only 'invaded' during the 2001 presidential and general elections but that the infiltration had become more visible at all levels.

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