ZAMBIANS are looking for a leader who does not only embody intelligence but has an emotional quotient that embraces the wishes and aspirations of all citizens.
This includes dealing with serious contentious issues that have eluded the last regime because it was blackmailed into silence, and therefore inaction.
Important institutions of governance were compromised and rendered ineffective because operatives under political tutelage failed to execute their responsibilities.
As a result a malaise set in which created frustration and anger because some groups of people in this country got away with murder.
Zambians are not looking for a technocrat but a man of the people who will articulate the true aspirations of all Zambians regardless of class, status or indeed any other consideration.
President Sata was mourned widely because he embodied the virtue of inclusivity by promising to ameliorate the plight of the poor and disadvantaged.
Whether or not this was achieved is a matter for historical account, suffice to state that the country as a whole has become a virtual worksite with roads, health institutions, education institutions and indeed new districts which are expected to deliver services in all parts of the country.
Zambians are looking for a leader with a face, empathy and an outreach that seeks to go beyond rhetorical public platitude to concrete desire to serve the most basic needs and interests of the ordinary people.
This will require that resources are directed towards the provision of vital social services to all rather than to special interest groups.
That is why some of the campaign promises in the end were patently untenable because they are heavily skewed towards either the urban or middle class population. These may indeed have the power to influence political decisions but they certainly do not have the monopoly of claiming a larger slice of the cake than other citizens or indeed investors.
The leader must look deeply into liberating this country from the poisonous and highly corrosive affliction of patronage that sections of society may wish to peddle by promising compromise to principle and the law.
We are on record as a newspaper, campaigning against the vice of compromise which has tarnished many institutions of governance including the judiciary, civil service, diplomatic service and other sectors of society.
Leaders should not be blackmailed by special interest because such compromise will ultimately lead to a loss of confidence, frustration and eventually anger.
Integrity must be the watch word and where any doubt arises, there must be forthright explanations.
Zambians will be on the lookout for the next 16 months to ensure that governance is restored to integrity and any vestiges of corruption are dealt with decisively. They expect serious investigation into vices that have remained untested because there was no political will to investigate and ensure that culprits are brought to book.
Unless this is done those who take office can rest assured that we shall constantly remind them that the Zambian people yearned for liberation from small tin pot dictators and stork borers that usurp power and authority because they are able to blackmail the leadership by collusion