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Too Many flagbearer Aspirants Spoil The Victory


Too Many flagbearer Aspirants Spoil The Victory

By Joseph Milton Lebbie………………..
There is the saying that too many cooks spoil the broth; similarly speaking, too many flagbearer aspirants spoil the political victory
The main opposition Sierra Leone Peoples Party has the record of presenting a large number of flagbearer aspirants during Presidential elections as clearly manifested in the 2007 and 2012 elections during which the party floated nearby twenty flagbearer contenders.
That was a clear display of SLPP’s democratic nature as the party gave the opportunity to every qualified member to contest the flagbearer position. But on the other hand, the multiplicity of the flagbearer aspirants might have contributed immensely to disintegrate the party.
When one of the flagbearer aspirants for the 2007 Presidential election, Charles Francis Margai, lost the flagbearer contest to Solomon Ekuma Berewa, he cried foul and became apparently discontented and, consequently, he left the party and formed his own party, the Peoples Movement for Democratic Change, (PMDC) which later allied with the All Peoples Congress (APC) to unseat the SLPP. Charles Margai, of course, carried along a large number of his disciples to the PMDC, thereby reducing SLPP votes.
There was a similar situation during the flagbearer contest for the 2012 Presidential polls. When Alhaji Usman Boie Kamara lost the contest to Brig. Rtd. Julius Maada Bio, he also broke away from the SLPP and, together with his numerous followers, joined the All Peoples Congress.
The dangerous aspect of allowing too many flagbearer aspirants is that many of those who end up losing the contest become aggrieved. This may give rise to several Trojan horses within the party. It is an unavoidable fact that many Sierra Leone politicians lack the political game spirit to easily concede defeat, so, they often become disgruntled whenever they lose any election.
And some of the defeated contenders may resort to engaging in various forms of subversive activities within the party as a way of vengeance.
Therefore, the more flagbearer aspirants the SLPP allows, the more the likelihood for the party to have many disenchanted and subversive groups who would try to undermine the party out of grudge. Some would say, “If I did not get it, no one else should get it”.
In view of the foregoing, I am advising the SLPP to present or allow a minimal number of flagbearer contestants this time round if the party is serious about bouncing back to power in 2018 or whenever the next Presidential elections will be held.
There is little political wisdom in allowing nearly twenty members of the same party to vie for a single position as it happened in 2007 and 2012 polls. That is clearly a recipe for disunity.

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