Letters

REFLECTIONS ON BY-ELECTIONS RESULTS

Dear Editor
NEVER want to be drawn into politics but I think I cannot pass by without commenting on this observation by Gary Nkombo.

I write this in my personal capacity as a citizen and a holder of a voter’s card.
In football you can’t blame the tactics of your opponents for the loss of a game because you have no control over which players the oppo-nent plays, the playing system they use among other things. The same applies to politics.
I followed closely the campaign of the UPND during the just ended by elections. I don’t remember the promise that they made to the peo-ple apart from mwankole and some other things.
When MMD was voted in 1991, we were promised eggs, bacon and milk at breakfast and the MMD promise put them into power. PF al-so came with the more money into people’s pockets slogan and they formed government.
What the UPND should do is to develop that message of hope for the Zambian people.
You rarely win an election from the opposition by using corruption and mwakole slogans. Zambians want to hear what an alternative gov-ernment will do in terms of taxes, job creation, wealth creating etc. They want a message of hope.
This weekend, EAZ was attacked by one Antony Bwalya or Mumba (UPND) member for its Citizen Entrepreneur Development Pro-gramme. What my colleague did not know is that the private sector led initiative has been welcomed by the people who want to achieve their business dreams. Now when a party attacks such an initiative, the message being sent is that once they form government, they won’t enter-tain empowerment programmes.
Instead of attacking civil servants and the police as corrupt, Sata would buy breakfast to police officers sent to arrest him. That gave hope to our men and women in uniform that once Sata formed government, he would be their person.
Then also you can’t use macroeconomic figures to explain to citizens that they are suffering. Suffering is felt at household level. When campaigning, you need to identify issues that really citizens are facing. A woman in Mwansabombwe doesn’t care about Eurobonds. All she wants are roads, food, clinics and that’s what the other camp is providing. So a new formula has to be developed to counter the PF.
Even for this article I will be insulted. Now when you insult me and I keep quiet, genuine people will sympathise with me and will be scared of your aggressiveness. Zambians are more likely to vote for soft leaders and less aggressive parties.
The attacks and hate speech especially on social media scares away potentia voters. Let the media team soften up and create friends rather than enemies.
Zambians consider soft characteristics when voting rather than the hard data.
Zambians are very tricky people. They vote with emotions.
THANKS
LUBINDA HAABAZOKA

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