Political tension in the country has become a source of concern because of the absence of discourse over sensitive issues affecting the people including the high unemployment rate and the general governance system in Zambia, says veteran politician, Vernon Mwaanga.
Mr Mwaanga said the absence of dialogue is threatening Zambia’s peace and unity owing to the lack of trust among political leaders,
“The Political tension in Zambia is currently palpable. It is evident that political leaders continue to talk at each other and not to each other, on such important issues as the new constitution, the Public Order Act, human rights, governance in general, the future of our education system, unemployment particularly among young people, the electoral process, gender imbalance in Parliament and local authorities and how best it can be corrected to conform to our SADC and AU obligations, among many other issues,” Mr Mwaanga said.
He explained that in a constitutional democracy like Zambia’s, dialogue should be a principal of leadership among political players and must be initiated by those in power as has been the case in the past.
Mr Mwaanga charged that those at the helm of power should take the lead in defusing the tension among political parties by providing an opportunity for dialogue instead of leaving the situation open to the enemies of democracy and freedom.
Meanwhile, Mr Mwaanga says the continued conflicts in the Middle East can only be resolved through the universal acceptance of a two state solution, with the establishment of two separate states as Palestine and Israel.
Mr Mwaanga said in the long run, there should be a universal acceptance of a two state solution; “where there must be established a separate Palestinian State, which will also recognise the right of the State of Israel to live within secure and internationally recognised boundaries.”
He said the concern was that the escalating conflicts in Gaza had seriously threatened the peace and security in the Middle East.
Mr Mwaanga explained that the state of tumoil has existed for many generations without any tangible solution to the continuous suffering of innocent people.
“The killings and counter killings will only lead to a continuation of the cycle of violence and the UN Security Council, has an inescapable duty to end the violence in Gaza and promote peace and human understanding between the Arabs and the Israelis. “Violence begets violence and this state of affairs should not be tolerated as it only leads to immense human suffering, particularly among innocent women and children,” he said.
And former Foreign Affairs Minister in the MMD government, Kabinga Pande has called for concerted effort from the international community including the African Union (AU) in addressing the conflict in the Middle East and anywhere else in the world.
“The African Union has advised that there should be co-existence between the two people’s and not continued fighting to disrupt that country’s peace. In fact, this should be an example to Zambia which has enjoyed 50years of peace and unity to avoid any disruptions. We should learn to sit down and find amicable solutions to our problems and disagreements. The bottom line is to learn to coexist as one people,” Mr Pande said.