A STICH IN TIME SAVES A COUNTRY FROM CIVIL WAR
I will be very slow in condemning police for their action in investigating the militia issue announced by the President, simply because the build up to civil strife is never announced. It simply catches people unawares.
In many cases those who are in the thick of things may know what is happening but the rest of society is often ignorant and only get caught up when civil strife breaks out.
The build up to an eventual civil uprising is always gradual. The discovery of a cell of people associated with a political party training for whatever cause should not be underrated because it could be the symptom of something bigger.
There is no telling what a handful of physically fit and trained people can do among citizens who have no training or fitness.
That training will give them the edge over others in matters of physical confrontation which is very different from political dialogue which is dependent on the quality of argumentation and debate.
The physically fit people will obviously dominate by sheer brutal force instead of advancing their political arguments.
It is for this reason that our politics must be guided by sober debate rather than emotional outbursts which will only raise tempers and cause violence.
STOP ATTACKING, HARASSING DIPLOMATS
The Civil Society for Poverty Reduction (CSPR) is shocked and disappointed with the manner in which politicians have in the last few days been advancing and extending their politicking to the international community at the expense of explaining their political ideologies to a Zambian voter who will turn up to cast his/her vote on August 11th 2016.
Political parties in Zambia are well aware that each time the country draws near to a general election, the international community has always had an interest in monitoring the political and governance environment in the period leading to the actual day of the elections and the 2016 general elections are exceptional to this practice.
It is therefore surprising and shocking to see that some political stakeholders want to scandalize, belittle and demonize the international community for engaging in activities which aimed at creating an enabling environment for all stakeholders to participate in an election which should be free and fair devoid of any perceived interference and one which is based on all fundamental principles of democratic values while upholding and protecting the constitutional rights and freedoms to all political stakeholders to have equal opportunity of access to the voters. The attacks on the international community are unprecedented, uncalled for and should immediately be halted.
CSPR is shocked that some politicians have even gone to the extent of questioning the contribution of some donor countries such as the United States of America towards development in Zambia. The statement which is attributed to some political party leaders is not only irresponsible, baseless and irrational but it is also divisive and dangerous and if left unabated has potential to damage the good relations that the people of Zambia enjoy with the people of America.
Zambians are very appreciative and well aware of the immerse poverty reduction projects which the American government has been implementing in Zambia over the years in sectors such as Health, Agriculture, Finance and Technology , Youth entrepreneurship, good governance and democracy a lot to mention but just a few . It is against this background that we find the attacks on the contribution of the US Government towards development in Zambia unfair and unreasonable especially at this time when the country is facing untold economic challenges which may need the support of donor countries such as the US. We would therefore like to urge politicians to be mindful and limit their politicking to real issues which will help to preserve the positive foreign relations which Zambia enjoys with other Countries.
UPND LEADERSHIP RESPONSIBLE FOR FRACAS
I am shocked that UPND leaders are blaming the police for the violence that took place at the Woodlands police station. This is hypocrisy.
It is these very same leaders who called for their members to come to the police station in Lusaka to give solidarity to them.
These leaders knew that violence was going to erupt. They deliberately created a situation where their members would create tension resulting in a confrontation.
The police were merely provoked by the crowd that the UPND leadership had assembled. For every action there is a reaction. This is what happened at Woodlands police station. Unfortunately more people than the cadres were teargased.
Those who called for the “mother of all rallies” must tender a public apology to the Zambian people for creating a situation in which violence was witnessed. The pictures on television are very depressing and annoying because whatever went on was not necessary. The whole country is being tarnished by one person.
If the meeting with diplomats was intended to intimidate the police and people of Zambia from taking action against wrong-doers then it has failed because our police have a duty to protect the nation against those who consider themselves to be above the law.