Fix your broken promises Mr President

Baffled by the incompetence and incapacity by President Michael Sata and his Patriotic Front (PF) administration to deliver their pre-elections campaigns, the youths, mostly the vendors and call boys who ensured PF formed government in early this month decided to remind Mr Sata of his many promises by openly booing the man they ushered into State House with the hope of more jobs and more money in their pockets. By Wallen Simwaka
INSTEAD of expending their energies on formulating policies that would see the effective creation of jobs for the many unemployed youths so they could have more money in their pockets, Mr Sata and the PF have elected to pre-occupy themselves with political machinations to stifle divergent views by way of creating fear and terror among the citizens who thought apart from the promised jobs, they were also voting for freedom of expression and association.
For now, the current political events that have characterized the country with no comment from President Sata indicate gloomy picture that there is a specter that is haunting the PF administration.
The specter haunting Mr Sata and the Patriotic Front has in the last few days manifested itself in the brutality, intimidation and arrests of citizens who are checking Mr Sata’s ways of governing the country.
According to Mr Elias Chipimo Jr, the president of the National Restoration Party (NAREP)’ the specter has come out as a result of the failure by Mr Sata and the PF o meet their many populist campaign promises and the lack of vision for the development of the country.
Democracy is sardonically being mutilated by President Sata and the PF while good governance is sliding into dangerous levels of kleptocracy with unemployment levels taking on new and frightening levels.
It is not surprising that the President and his cabinet have decided to award themselves a 100 percent salary increase long before they have finished their probation because such is the doctrine of a kleptocratic regime.
And when those who voted for them ask why, they are either mercenaries of the capitalist opposition or bitter that they are not the ones looting the country’s treasury.
The barbaric treatment of United Party for National Development (UPND) president Hakainde Hichilema by the police, the unceremonious deportation of Rwandan Catholic priest Vietuer Banyangandora and the ordering of the police to arrest the Zambia Federation of Employers director Harrington Chibanda are despotic schemes of instilling fear among the citizens so they do not question those in power.
The fear by Mr Sata that the PF is expressly losing its popularity has forced the Head of S tate to adopt Hitler’s Nazi ways of getting support from citizens by way of intimidation and threats off arrests.
The ruling Patriotic Front has become a party of fear and intolerance which in real political definition is nothing but despotism.
It has become the norm that ideological and conceptual differences now end up on police cases log books as the ruling party accuses the opposition political parties, the church and the employers of inertly funning anarchy in the country.
What is true is that the political pendulum has shifted far off the ruling party too fast than ever imagined that President Sata and the PF have to resort to intimidation to find temporal favour from among those that voted for change last year.
Mr Sata and the PF promised Zambians too many good things than Dr Kenneth Kaunda during the struggle for political independence among which was more jobs for the army of unemployed youths.
More money in the pockets of ordinary citizens, cheaper and lean cabinet, new and durable constitution…all within 90 days of assuming government are what anchored Mr Ssta’s and the PF victory in the last tripartite elections.
Today, Mr Sata has disappointingly failed to live up to the promises he willingly made and is resorting to draconian means of silencing the people who voted for him by politically harassing them.
So instead of fixing his broken promises such as the stymied more money in people’s pockets and more jobs, the President, using state power has designed a political scheme meant to create an environment of fear so that everybody should sing praises for him.
And since Mr Sata and his government cannot handle criticism, they are employing fear to yoke citizens to their odd wishes of governing the country beyond the first term.
He has found pleasure in belittling and disparaging the opposition political party leaders like MMD president Nervers Mumba and his UPND counterpart Hakainde Hichilema but only in a feeble attempt to validate his ego.
Zambia has become a country where every citizen has to watch his back or his neighbour before saying anything against government because state agents are now spying on all and sundry.
And there are now state decoys even in church to listen to what the men of God would be preaching to their flocks in their churches or synagogues and if the message will be deemed anti government, the priest or pastor should be prepared to face the power of the state.
Reverends, priests and pastors will now have to be careful what sermons or homily they have to deliver to their followers or they risk being arrested and imprisoned or deported if they are not Zambians.
It is said that fear creates demi-gods, tyrants, despots, autocrats and dictators and that is why MMD deputy national secretary Chembe Nyangu is calling on Zambians to rise and defend the democracy the country has been enjoying since the collapse of the one party state of UNIP.
The PF government is effectively using terror, dread, horror, panic and alarm to instill fear in the minds of the weak souls like the MMD Members of Parliament (MPs) serving as deputy ministers in his government.
Mobutu Tsetseseko of former Zaire now Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Bokassa of the Central African Republic, Idi Amini of Uganda and former Lybian leader Muamar Ghadaffi effectively used the fear factor to rule their countries.
Mugabe, probably Africa’s last standing dictator and a close ally to President Sata has been using fear and alarm to govern his country.
Promoting economic growth and job creation must be Mr Sata’s focus and not what the country has witnessed in the last ten months where hiring of civil servants, parastatal heads and replacing them with mostly family members while firing those perceived to be sympathizers of the MMD.
Zambians are looking for a visionary leadership and innovative policies that must be designed to address the many political and economic challenges facing the country and those should be in line with reducing poverty through job creation.
Mr Chipimo is of the firm view that Mr Sata’s lack of vision and focused policies in the development of the country is causing panic in the PF government and that as the President becomes more desperate, the country is going to witness more barbaric and brutal treatment of citizens criticizing the government.
“We are deeply concerned about the levels of intolerance being exhibited by the government. It is a worrying trend that President Sata’s administration is exhibiting dictatorial traits as has been seen by the levels of intolerance to divergent views. Zambians must rise and stand against dictatorship and intolerance. And let me caution that the more desperate President Sata and his Administration become, the more we are going to see citizens getting brutalized and arrests,” Mr Chipimo said recently.
The PF government has made many political and economic gaffs both in speech and deed and the President and his men have been quick to blame the opposition for their lapses.
Instead of coming out and being honest about their shortcomings, the PF government has chosen to bullock the opposition political party leaders especially DR Mumba of the MMD and Mr Hichilema of the UPND.
Dr Mumba and Mr Hichilema have consistently reminded Mr Sata that he has a duty and the obligation to fix the broken promises even when they have known that the President’s record in governance and democracy has never been promising and inspiring.
But Zambians are crying: Fix your broken promises Mr President and stop the rot of intimidating and harassing those with different views from yours.
The author is a retired journalist

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