A test on democracy
ZAMBIA has passed through one of its most difficult times in its election history. The just ended elections were a test in many ways.
I tested the strength of our growth of democracy and whether we passed that test. You are the judge. The test that the last election presented was a test on our oneness as a country.
Our motto is One Zambia One Nation was coined to bring unity in the country of diverse tribal divide and regionalism.
Clear for everyone even a little child or a day dreamer can see that we are more divided now more than ever before.
We can choose to sugar-coat it or hide our heads in the sand but the truth is daunting to us all. Left alone we have ingredients for serious trouble and tribal strife and tribal hatred but alas, God forbid, for mother Zambia.
Something must be done and done fast before the problem escalates. There must be a deliberate move to bring about national reconciliation.
As a political science student the election and its outcome did not call for a government of national unity.
We did not reach those levels but we need serious national reconciliation. We must all work towards true oneness as a country. Many are hurting and meaningful development is not possible in a place where people are hurting.
Our politics has divided us more than our tribal divide. One man said Africans are not good for democracy because of our way of life. I tend to think it is because of our traditions.
We come from kingship background which I do not have problems with; chance and time were to take us there.
Democracy is foreign to Africa yet it’s one practice that brings about consensus in national matters. Africa is comfortable with its traditions of ‘father has spoken in a home so it is law’.
Zambia needs to formulate a policy that will enable this reconciliation whether incrementally or otherwise.
As a student of political science and a political analyst who is involved in governance issues of this country I can tell that leaders in this country do not appreciate our tribal strengths which, if enhanced, can help us blend our oneness to the benefit of this country.
We must start with legislation. Our democracy will in the end not look accommodating or inclusive of its practice in this country if something is not done. Our patriotism is changing position. We are no longer patriotic to the nation like in the days of our forefathers but to a party, a person or tribal divide and identity.
I wish I could talk about what tribalism really is even in the light of scripture but will leave it to the next article.
My advice now is certain steps and policy direction must be taken to avert great troubles in the future.
I am not a leader who loves to sound messages of doom.
We need to sit down as a country and undo certain things that have been done to change the course of this nation.
I will be glad and willing to participate in such endeavours at every level as long as they are directed in reconciliation or coming up with ways and steps that can foster that peaceful approach.
Peace is a very fragile thing but it overcomes. I want to get to the eyes of those in authority both in opposition and ruling that we need to act now.
Rev Gibson Nyirenda / Political analyst
HH should take advice
The leaders of ZDDM may be “Zamfooters” but the fact is that many people have benefited from our initiative from 1988 to the time we left your camp to launch a signature collecting exercise for former president Rupiah Bwezani Banda -RB – to come back to active politics which subsequently landed us into supporting President Edgar Changwa Lungu.
We may belong to the Patriotic Front camp but the fact is that we feel hurt when you (HH) continue to drift from one court to another when the PF can also build a very solid case against your party.
We believe that many Zambians are tired of hearing about court cases and we support them, hence our appeal that you stop diverting national attention from real issues of national interest.
We have no wish to engage your party on anything but may be forced to take you on because we have enough data to prove that the sweeping result in the Southern, Western and North-Western province were actually engineered.
If the PF is not keen to probe the big scandal behind the results from the three provinces and to establish what really happened, ZDDM may be forced to follow up this case which has really bred mistrust in the nation.
We are aware that even people from areas like Dundumwezi are still in shock because they don’t understand where the 33,000 votes came from in that game park.
ZDDM will want the nation to know the truth and to prove that the results in the three provinces were doctored and that the vote was not tribal.
We trust that you will take our advice so that the nation can move on instead of “chasing the wind”. Lastly we would like mention that we are not happy with the kind of politics in the country. It’s like we are taking our freedom for granted and failing to realize that it’s easier to destroy than to build.
The people championing antagonistic agendas don’t realize that the chaos they are breeding will not spare them as well.
It’s a pity that many people in the nation don’t know that Zambia is one of the best countries to live in and it will be sad to destroy this peace and harmony because once lost it can never be recovered.
We must think of the innocent blood of children and women which can be lost if we continue to compromise the future of our nation with the primitive politics of antagonism and violence at work.