POLITICAL parties are institutions or organised groups of people who share a set of similar political aims and opinions and aim to influence public policy and play a vital role in a democracy.
Ideologies and national consciousness are often the bedrock which the political parties stand on to drive public policy and influence national agenda.
Ideologies such as capitalism is the main impetus for the republican and democrat parties in the United States, liberal and conservative in Australia and have very much influenced these countries’ political landscape and economy.
Let alone the strong sense of national awakening in South Africa’s African National Congress stirred the equal rights movement and the struggle against apartheid.
In Papua New Guinea, we don’t have political parties driven by strong ideology and national conviction.
Despite great efforts made by Dr Alphonse Gelu and the Integrity of Political Parties and Candidates Commission in structuring and institutionalising political parties ours still remain fragile and pragmatic.
Our political parties lack the drive and national cohesion to become vibrant political organs even some good attempts made by the National Alliance at some point in time and
People’s National Congress in recent times.
The rest of the country’s political parties including the two oldest, Pangu and Melanesian Alliance, have become parties of convenience.
Like empty shells that hermit crabs use as shelter for partial containment and protection – without a shell this particular crustacean is extremely vulnerable to predators – lately political parties have become vehicles used for political convenience.