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ZAMBIANS must embrace unity now that the election period has passed and focus on con- tributing to national development.

This time around, the United Party for National Development (UPND) members and other citi- zens must desist from mocking Patriotic Front (PF) leaders and the general membership.

The PF on the other hand, must stop mourning and concentrate on reorganising the party into a formidable opposition force.

It is also time for citizens in various communi- ties to bury the hatchet and espouse love, unity and peace all the time.

Yes, victory is sweet while a loss of such a magnitude for the PF is extremely bitter, but such a scenario should not divide the nation.

In any case, democracy is known to be a sys- tem of government by the whole population, typ- ically through elected representatives.

This means that the PF, which has representa- tives in parliament and councils, still have a vital role to play in the governance of the country, al- beit differently.

In a democracy, an election is an important aspect, whereby some people lose while others triumph; this must be accepted.

One other important ingredient is that democ- racy of a country must be able to grow so that politics could also progress rather than being stagnant.

In fact, one American statesman, who was the 26th President of the world’s largest economy, Theodore Roosevelt once said: “a great democ- racy must be progressive or it will soon cease to be a great democracy. “

Therefore, Zambia’s democracy is growing, with power truly residing in the citizens who on August 12 spoke loudly through the ballot.

This is progressive and those in leadership must get acquainted with the tenets of democ- racy.

The leaders in new UPND Government should, therefore, bear in mind that even with the over- whelming victory, the citizens hold the key and must be served diligently.

President Hakainde Hichilema has repeatedly indicated that his government will stick to dem- ocratic tenets and also work towards turning around the economy while recognising that citi- zens are key in every decision.

It is hoped that all leaders in the ruling par- ty including Members of Parliament, Ministers, councillors and party leaders will be humble and hard working without getting consumed in the influence and authority at their disposal.

They must never close their ears and become arrogant as that will be the quickest route to defeat.

Citizens are alert and expect nothing but hard work, competence, honesty and fairness from leaders who must meet all expectations such as improved standards of living and a thriving na- tional economy.

On the other hand, citizens themselves must work hard instead of waiting for hand-outs.

Secondly, citizens across tribal and party lines should support Government without any tinge of jealousy.

Yes, it is common for some envious people to only open their eyes on negatives and wait for the UPND to make even the slightest mistake for them to start mocking government leaders and their supporters.

This should not be the case!

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