Chief Government Spokesperson Kennedy Sakeni says the Patriotic Front (PF) government is not bothered by visits by officials from the international community who want to ascertain the levels of adherence to the respect of Human rights in the country.
This stance is most worrying.
The Minister should be worrying that the Commonwealth has actually sent an officer to come and ascertain the levels of governance abuses in Zambia.
The Commonwealth is clearly reacting to real, rather than empty conjecture. It is not an organization taken to flights of fancy.
We must all agree as a nation that not all is well, hence the need for concerted action by all concerned to reduce the temperature and put in place enduring governance structures that will see this country peacefully to the next Presidential and General elections in 2016.
It does not sit well that while the Commonwealth representative is in Zambia, our media houses are inundated with stories about opposition leader Fr. Frank Bwalya’s assault by suspected Patriotic Front thugs.
Worse still all the other leaders of significant opposition parties are in courts of law over all manner of cases including charge of defaming the President. Without commenting on the merits of the charges it is quite obvious that the continuing arrests and prosecution of opposition leaders sends a very wrong signal to the outside world.
It shows that the Government is not only intolerant but that it is determined to quash the opposition at whatever cost.
One strong feature of any multiparty democracy is the active and sometimes robust debate that characterizes political dialogue.
As Zambians we must be concerned with the perception created by events that occur inside the country rather than any outside criticism.
The Bible states that “There is nothing from without a man, that entering into him can defile him: but the things which come out of him, those are they that defile the man.”
In essence we are the masters of our own destiny. There is nothing that Mr. Rupiah Banda’s lawyer Robert Amsterdam can say to defile the country, it is rather our actions which provide the fodder and ammunition that defile our country.
This is also the reason why Government and corporate agencies in general spend money on public relations to project a good image which promotes and enhances the image of an organization.
There is no question that image matters. If anything Public Relations rather than advertising matter much more because it provides a forum in which the status of any organization will be explained in detail.
Therefore to suggest otherwise is wrong and most certainly not conducive to good order. We hope that Government will invest in presenting itself in the best possible form and manner in order that foreign observers and investors will consider this country as a worthy, steady and reliable investment destination.