Letters

WHY VOTE FOR A CLUELESS OPPOSITION, VOID OF A CLEAR GROWTH AGENDA?

Dear Editor,     

IS there anything new to change the narrative of 2006, 2008, 2011, 2015 and 2016? Personal frustrations should never be the reason for regime change, voting for a clueless opposition that only speaks ill of Zambia but a verifiable alternative development agenda that should make the existing one questionable.

Families in Zambia must shift from earning an income to creating wealth and wealth in Zambia is in agriculture and not clueless political misfits riding on the ignorance of the people.

Zambia today is a construction site but instead of appreciating the grand effort by the government, they rubbish the achievements as if the people they are talking to don’t have eyes to see how the country has changed.

You can’t lie yourself to State House. Just be bold enough to articulate your development agenda clearly stating the how factor leading to those with melancholic personalities to buy into your development agenda.

There are no shortcuts in life that offer sustainable solutions. Miraculously changing the economy should not be part of the campaign narrative. Let’s ask questions! HOW!!!

The fact that the opposition can only bank on President Edgar Lungu not standing must wake us all up. The opposition is blank as far as national development is concerned.

I keep reminding opposition cadres that you can’t change any government by fighting it through lies but by coming up with an alternative development agenda that should render the existing one obsolete.

It’s very clear from the UPND’s failure to offer an alternative development agenda that it’s not a party that can be trusted with instruments of power.

Its agenda is certainly not one based on development but ensuring that Mr. Hakainde Hichilema manages to achieve his political ambition of being the first Tonga in State House as per his disastrous 2006 intra-party campaign narrative that saw the once mighty UPND disintegrating into a third tier political party.

With this straightforward background, Zambians ought to realise that retaining President Edgar Lungu will ensure the much needed stability for a sustainable economic recovery programme.

The UPND would come with its own teething problems and I doubt Zambia can afford such a scenario at this moment.

For instance, being in opposition since its inception in the late 1990s means the UPND owes its sponsors billions of Kwachas, if not US Dollars.

Its preoccupation would, accordingly, be satisfying the needs of the same funders and not those of an ordinary child in rural Zambia. Let’s learn from China, Germany, Rwanda or even Russia about the importance, in economic terms, of a stable political leadership, especially in the Office of the President!

Although I do appreciate Jesus’s words in Mark 6:4 when He says, “A prophet is not without honour except in his own town, among his relatives and in his own home,” I want to believe that the issue of insulting President Edgar Lungu has more to do with our current divisive political system, because insults often emanate from politically frustrated opposition cadres.

Of what use is it to the nation that we be made to believe that President Lungu is a useless president when his achievements are there to point at?

Is he not the same man that the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation, African Union, Food and Agriculture Organisation  UN Economic Commission for Africa and the African Development Bank jointly conferred on a medal of recognition as a champion of the Third Industrial Development Decade for Africa beating all the other presidents across the continent?

Why is President Lungu only viewed by the opposition in the context of him being an obstacle to Mr. Hichilema’s political ambitions and not as a Zambian Head of State who did a phenomenal and excellent international diplomacy through the various meetings he arranged with key stakeholders in the DRC during the run up to the elections as Chair of the SADC organ on Politics, Defence and Security, in a country that has never had any meaningful democratic elections since attaining independence?

And just a couple of months ago, the African Union in collaboration with AE Trade Group and the Africa Business Association, honoured him with an appreciation award in recognition of his efforts and work done in realising the over $2 trillion worth Africa Continental Free Trade Area which promises to offer African businesses and investors the ability to conduct 97 percent of their trade tariff free. It’s clear the negativity is driven by something else; regime change at any cost, but in whose interest? A few politicians and not the ordinary child in rural Zambia.

Besides creating an environment in which we can’t appreciate our own achievements, the current divisive political atmosphere has reduced us into a country of campaigns and elections with the ruling party spending as much as it can to hold on to power while the opposition can go as far as resorting to economic sabotage to take over power, throwing through the window the whole essence of democracy. Democracy cannot be reduced to voting alone. It is not, by definition, government by the winners. It flourishes by allowing a diversity of voices to be tabled and heard.

But the current governance system, unfortunately, has reduced us to seeing the biggest opposition leader, Mr. Hichilema, ferrying patients to the hospital on a wheelbarrow in a political stunt that typifies how politicians want to see politics as a self-serving tool as opposed to it being a vehicle for development. Mature opposition politics demands that we offer constructive criticism and a progressive alternative to government.

The opposition’s task should be to examine every government policy and react to it publicly with cool heads to help government improve on it. And the opposition can only be useful so long as it is able to make the government do things that are objectively good for us without harming us in the process. This requires that it remains keenly forward thinking, only demanding things that must be demanded, and keen to do so in a manner that preserves and does not destroy.

MPANDASHALO EVANS MWEWA.

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