So Graon, Jastis Pati has become the biggest Pati in Vanuatu after the Malo/Aore by elections. It now commands 8 MPs in Parliament. How did this happen is what a lot of the mother party’s are asking themselves.
There is a lesson to be learnt here for the ‘mama party’s’ and one that must be taken seriously because the mass failure from the ‘2016 Snap Elections’ by the mother party’s has shown that people no longer see the party principle but look now to fairness, justice, and the common language of caring for the people.
People do not like the idea of someone being a leader because he has been there for quite some time, they like the idea of having a leader because that man/woman is always around when they need him/her. This one factor makes Hierarchy a dangerous trend for big political party’s in Vanuatu, as it will send the big party’s to their graves. Hierarchy stops political growth and is cause for a lot of internal divisions, and this can be disastrous. Growing political power means breaking political barrier and allowing everyone a choice and a decision.
The hierarchy system will kill the political party’s as they spend more time with internal fighting and the biggest problem here is, the fight is between the Party leaders and the Party supporters. When a leader fights against his supporters, and ignores his supporters wishes, they will leave him and he will perish all alone. When the supporters leave and start a new party, that decision alone will end chances of getting elected. Internal Party issue’s have seen ‘mama parties’ loose support and will in the end sent all the votes to the other side which means campaigning is nothing but a show and it won’t yield a positive result.
‘Mama Parties’ pay too much attention to their base support which is very deadly given it makes them want to use this base support to remain in power but forget that politics is also about growing closer to the people who do not vote for you. The base support is held by sub committees which really do not work and political party’s must draw up new strategies to counter this issue. The two MP’s that topped Port Vila and Luganville in the snap election did not have more than one sub committee, they operated on the idea that the power to choose is vested in the people and it is them who will make a choice.
‘Duels’ in Vanuatu politics have lost a lot of elections. Former MP for Ambae Richard Mera lost his seat, because the supporters were not happy with the decisions made by the VP executive, which supporters say totally went against what the voters wanted, and ultimately turned the Ambae elections into a dual between ‘VP’ and ‘VP’ and resulted in ‘VP’ losing their seat. The lesson here is avoid duels at all costs as it will eventually send a wrong message to voters and in the end it will lose you the election and this is guaranteed in Vanuatu elections behavior.
Campaigns are no longer convincing and making people emotional is one thing, convincing them to vote is another. People are people, they can understand if you provide them one piece chicken on a plate. But when you provide them pork, beef, fish, nawimba, and chicken, they now have a choice and can also make rational choices. On the menu people will always choose what what they want but have you persuaded them to try something they do not like?
GJP has taken the top spot so what lesson is there to be learnt? The big lesson here is that, the UNITY for politics has been put to the test in the snap elections 2016 and did not work. Instead of UNITING to reaffirm the UNITY between them and create a force, and run one candidate, they all came out with guns armed and firing and in the end got shot by their own bullets.
Big political parties must think hard and strategies. Do not go armed into a campaign, go unarmed and allow the people to be your Armour. See the people as the beginning and the end of you. Listen to them and be part of them. Do not throw ideas at them but allow them to throw you idea’s and let them carry you to victory!!
The GJP win on Malo is not convincing but it does show that small can win big and also it is a trap line for ‘mama parties’ to realize they need to be more tactical and also to realize hierarchy is a death trap. It is high time to realize the more you fight for power, the quicker you will have no power.
The ‘mama parties’ have lost Malo/Aore because of creed and disrespect. They have looked to the numbers instead of looking at ‘respect’. Respect is honorable and the Malo/Aore seat should have been given back to Nagriamel. This is a mistake, that all have paid dearly for and we hope it becomes a lesson as we move forward.