Opinion

VALUE FREEDOM

ZAMBIA’S 56th anniversary of independence celebrations might have been low key – what with the nation and the world at large being conscious of Covid-19 – but that should not make Zambians lose focus of the country’s aspirations and achievements.
The nation marked its independence from colonial Britain on October 24, 1964 under the theme “Zambia at 56, One Land, One Nation, building our future proud and free.”
It says a lot of what Zambia stands for, one land, one nation and building our future as a proud and free people.
Considering what doomsayers have been saying about the country, the theme should galvanise Zambi- ans into coming together to tackle the country’s eco- nomic and political ills.
Vice President Inonge Wina aptly defined the theme when she said Zambia’s nation building is a continu- ous process that has to be worked for and not handed on a silver platter.
Ms Wina said Zambians have to put aside their polit- ical and tribal affiliations by embracing patriotism and hard work to build a better Zambia as envisaged by the country’s founding fathers and mothers.
The Vice President said this when she graced the oc- casion of the hoisting of the national flag ceremony on the eve of the country’s 56th independence anniversa- ry at the Lusaka showgrounds.
Like Ms Wina, we too note and appreciate that the founding fathers and freedom fighters laid a strong foundation upon which all Zambians must contribute to promoting unity, peace and development.
For why should some people want to destroy some- thing that nationalists sacrificed their lives for, an inde- pendent nation?
Zambians must realise that despite all the artificial differences, they are one people and share a common destiny.
North-Western Province Minister Nathaniel Mubuk- wanu rightly observed that if there was no love, unity of purpose and clear understanding of the mission that was before the Zambian freedom fighters, Zambia as a country wouldn’t be celebrating 56 years of self-rule.
Mr Mubukwanu said it is for this reason that every Zambian has a moral obligation and duty to ensure that the country does not disintegrate.
He said politics of hatred and division should not be given room to flourish and that the responsibility of building a better Zambia should be a collective effort of all Zambian citizens without exception.
This is specially so as Zambia inches closer to the 2021 presidential and general elections. Let the vio- lence that is being orchestrated among some of the po- litical players be frowned upon, for that is unZambian.
The uncalled for violence witnessed during the re- cent by-elections in some parts of the country were as a result of some political parties not wanting to operate within the parameters of the law.
Respect for the law is cardinal to defending the na- tion’s independence.
Independence was fought for to ensure that Zam- bians would elect their leaders by voting freely and peacefully without intimidation.
“Let the Zambian flag remain a common heritage for all of us. Each one of us must, therefore, contribute to mother Zambia by cherishing the freedom struggle,” Vice President Wina said.
That is a legacy all Zambians must hold on to by re- jecting those political misfits who think they can cheat their way to leadership of the country.

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