By. Bwalya Mambepa
Fact: In 1964 Zambia attained independence from British colonial rule. It is time for another independence from our stupid, lazy, corrupt and Drive-By-Dead politicians. I am somebody who’s not afraid of speaking the truth, or ashamed of it, and I don’t see any need to qualify it or to make excuses for it.
We kicked out the Brits to be stewards over the protection of our destiny. We chose to profit, dictate, and control the country across all spectrums of tribes and cultures. I feel that before 2016 presidential elections, we should embark on a critical moment in our present time where we must stake claim of the destiny we have so dearly squandered. We can no longer financially continue to enrich politicians that under-employs our young people, ignores our young people and the vulnerable, holds our political system for ransom, and fails to reflect the significance of our collective tribal and cultural contribution and influence in the running of the country’s affairs.
I’m not referring to any particular politician or political party. I am referring to the entire ‘malady’ political system in the country. We must consider the socio-psychological impact of this. The ability to control the destiny of a country depends on how citizens view themselves. When you control the image, like the British did, and establish the power of the protagonist, and antagonist with political lies, you subconsciously and subliminally control the thoughts and beliefs of citizens. It’s our responsibility that this country is once again snatched from selfish politicians (Mwamba’s and Kambwili’s) and be handed over to the youth to secure the destiny of our children. I don’t know about you but we the younger generation should have our hand in every facet of this country.
Here are 5 areas we need to do right, to stand a chance of reshaping and resetting the country’s destiny:
- Elect leaders who can lead
Visions are worth fighting for. If you want to make a name for yourself, you should elect PF (Mwamba and Kambwili), they will make music for your children. Besides, why sacrifice your life educating your children, only to end up making Mwamba and Kambwili’s dream? The purpose of creating a nation is liberation and creation of opportunities for all. Why are we electing selfish leaders only to take away the country’s destiny from us? Selfishness is their birth right. If we are electing leaders to create opportunities for their families and girl friends, then we are in for Zambia’s disappointment. Real leaders cast visions, use useful words to sharpen the nation, and inspire the nation to act. Sorry but we have no such leaders.
- Elect leaders who are healthy
We should stop playing jokes with our political system. When are we going to create an alternate reality, gain a new understanding that we need healthy leaders and not Drive-by-Dead leaders? Hey, hey. Hey, hey, hey, have you heard the news, guys? Have you heard the news? The president who has only been in office for short time, without any real executive work, but has done more traveling, is sick? Isn’t that crazy? Isn’t that really stupid that over 10 million people would elect a sick man in office? You might think that’s not that big a deal. But being a president is a stressful job, and God knows why a nation will pass-by healthy men and women and choose a Drive-By-Dead man as a president.
- Elect leaders who can pass laws
In the USA, elections will be held on Tuesday, November 2016. This day is set by law, a date instituted by the Congress in 1845. Knowing the Election Day is not just common sense and logical, but it practically allows anyone who wants to run for office to plan, evaluate options, be known and take the message across the country. I know next year there will be presidential and parliamentary elections in Zambia, but the date and time will be announced by rolling a dice (by the ruling party and the election commissioner). By keeping the date unknown, Zambians are always deprived of vetting the candidates, thus settling for Drive-By-Dead candidates, and opportunists with no message for the country. Those aspiring to run for 2016 office should be allowed to campaign starting today. The incumbent president is always campaigning by virtue of being in the office. Am I the only blind man who can’t see? This is so easy to do, only if a nation has intelligent and patriotic members of parliament, of which Zambia has none.
By elections? I’m not even going to try to quantify how silly and financial draining by-elections are in Zambia. If a MP chooses to switch parties, his/her party should elect or appoint someone to complete the parliamentary term. By the way if the president dies while in office, the VP should finish the term, after all isn’t that the reason of having a VP? Just by enacting this simple rule (no by-elections), Zambia would have saved millions of $$$$$ and built schools and clinics the country so badly need.
- Elect leaders who can think
My parents sent me to school along with my brothers and sisters because they believed in the power of education and it potential to open doors and opportunities in life. I bet your parents did the same. I can’t understand for a life of me how in this day and age a nation can choose leaders who can’t think and articulate and make sense of the national issues to the masses. If we don’t believe in education, please we should stop sending our children to school, and just start raising them to be politicians. I am not saying every learned person out there can think and articulate themselves. That’s why if people are given enough time to campaign and be challenged through a rigorous campaign, their flaws will be exposed and candidates with ideas for action should be the ones to make it on the ballot paper.
- Elect leaders who are ethical
In this global village, it is increasingly clear both in business and politics that, doing what is morally right produces the best nation and results. I once lived and studied in USA, and I can say with all honesty that as imperfect as the country is, people do hold their leaders accountable by voting them out if they don’t do what they were elected to do. When political power is abused, it’s the masses that suffer. We have so many men and women who have worked harder the right away, but can’t even retire in decency. But then you have young ambitious and self-serving politicians day in and out boosting on Face book how they are living the ‘elite’ Zambian dream only accessible to a few. These ruthless corrupt young and old Zambian leaders don’t vote themselves in office. They are voted in office by you and me. So we must like corrupt leaders?
This list gives credence to what many of you have seen and witnessed, and should be shaping the political discourse as we match each day towards 2016. Now, I know some of you myopic and die hard cadres will be scared the hell out of this truth. As for the rest of you sane and patriotic Zambians with the care for the country, we can’t let the Drive-By-Dead kind of leaders determine the destiny for our children in 2016 and beyond!
By: Bwalya Mambepa,
Gender and Human Rights Activist- South Africa)