HH’s biggest opposition is voters, not political party – Shishuwa

HH’s biggest opposition is voters, not political party – Shishuwa

HH’S BIGGEST OPPOSITION IS NOT PF BUT THE ALERT VOTERS – SHISHUWA

Hichilema’s biggest opposition is not a political party; it’s an alert and engaged citizenry – Sishuwa

The biggest opposition that President Hakainde Hichilema faces is an alert and politically engaged citizenry, not an organised party, University of Zambia lecturer Sishuwa Sishuwa has charged.

In a series of tweets yesterday, Dr Sishuwa said an alternative political formation will emerge as an organic process and should be the least of the President’s concerns.

“What Hichilema must fear most is already in place: the voter. Discontent will not wait until there is an effective opposition party to harvest it!”, he wrote.

Below is the controversial cartoon that Dr Sishuwa posted on his Twitter page and the several tweets that accompanied it.

“I hope [President Hakainde] Hichilema understands that he was simply the conduit of the revulsion against [forner President Edgar] Lungu and that his support is tenuous. The 1.8m voters who supported Lungu, despite his incompetence and the damage he inflicted on Zambia, are hardcore supporters who are unlikely to leave PF.

In contrast, many of those who voted for Hichilema are not his supporters but people who were disillusioned with the status quo. These are the ones who decisively swung the vote in his favour. Their support in future elections is not guaranteed; it is subject to good performance.

I get a sense that having been elected with a popular mandate, Hichilema thinks there is no credible opposition to unseat him. In my view, the biggest opposition that he faces is an alert and politically engaged citizenry, not an organised party. The latter will rise organically and should be the least of his concerns. What Hichilema must fear most is already in place: the voter. Discontent will not wait until there is an effective opposition party to harvest it!

Please note that we all want Hichilema to succeed. Even when we criticise his leadership actions, that is our goal: to help the president do better, for Zambia’s sake. The praise singers who think that we criticise HH because we don’t want him to succeed should note this point.

In opposition, Hichilema promised to reduce the cost of fuel for consumers, if elected. In power, he has increased it. This turnaround undermines public trust in elected officials. Unless he wilfully lied to get power, the President owes Zambians an explanation, apology, or both. There is need for transparency, accountability and clear communication from the Government.

If the President has realised that governing is not simple, or that things are worse than he knew when in opposition, then he should simply state so. It is arrogance to keep quiet. He owes Zambians an explanation for the turnaround on a clear promise. I have no obligation as a voter to start looking for excuses on his behalf.

I worry that many Zambians are still ridding the wave of euphoric victory over the incompetent PF and Lungu, and cannot seem to understand why anyone should not join this emotional trip of victory. Even governments rely on that emotional trip to disappoint on campaign promises. This should not be the way. It is important to remain vigilant and hold our public leaders to account. Injustices and governance slippages do not go to sleep because we are celebrating anything!

There was a similar exhilaration in Zimbabwe when Robert Mugabe was overthrown. Now it is clear that little has changed, and in some respects things have got worse. It is important to step back. Even traffic lights turn red after facilitating the responsible motorist’s passage!

Lungu and the PF needed to go. No question about that. Now it’s time to hold our new leaders to account, even if we may have helped in one form or another to put them there. I also think that disagreeing with a person when they are wrong is the best help we can ever offer them.

What I am seeing today is a dangerous trend of people getting worked up when wrongs, committed by the new administration, are pointed out. Some have already canonised the new President.

We are now being educated by our new leaders, such as the Minister of Information, to dust up our understanding of the law and the Constitution to ‘correctly’ enjoy our human rights, or else the law will visit us. Argh, this is tragic and unacceptable!”

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