Today is the most important day in Zambia politically. Today we decide how we want to be governed and by what type of leaders for the next five years. This is the only day we, the ordinary people, are given a chance to decide and determine the immediate future of our country. But our decision today will not only impact on the next five years; it will affect the entire foreseeable future. What irresponsible leaders can destroy in five years can take a generation to correct.
Today Zambia is broken, divided, afraid and uncertain. Zambia currently lacks visionary, able, strategic, bold, selfless leaders. Like in any failed state, the leadership role has been taken up by chancers. The result is a failed economy, racism, tribalism violence, theft and general anarchy. It is in such environments that cruel, inhuman leaders thrive. They do not just thrive in such confusion but they facilitate it and sustain it because its their natural habitat. In a normal environment, they can’t function, they become like fish removed from water. The violence, tribalism, intolerance, joblessness we are seeing today has not come about because God hates us; its because those who benefit from such a scenario have created it. They will never admit it and they will always have followers. That bad leaders have followers is hardly surprising. Satan, the father of confusion himself had millions of followers in terms of fallen angels. Hitler, Idi Amini, Pol Pot and all other savages had millions of followers. So do not marvel when you see thousands, even millions of people support a visionless, violent hypocrite. It’s normal. Those followers also need salvation.
But Zambia is not finished. There is hope. We still have natural resources which we can develop. Zambia might be a failed state but we are not a hopeless people. We can rise again and be prosperous, united and proud. That depends on what you will do in that voting booth today. Just stop and think before you cast you vote. Do you want what you have witnessed in the past 18 months to continue in the next five years?
For you the young people, do you honestly believe that the current leadership can grant you the means to pursue the careers you want and create jobs for you?
The people of the Copperbelt, do you sincerely believe that Edgar Lungu and co will protect your jobs in the mines after this election? Are you really sure? How many jobs has Lungu created so far?
The people of Eastern province; would you allow Rupiah Banda to mislead you again? Are you better off than the rest of the country just because Lungu claims to be an Easterner? Ask yourselves, why does Rupiah Banda think he owns you? Why does Mr Banda only campaign in Eastern province when he is supposed to be a former president of the whole country? Is he a unifying or destructive figure? Just last week, Mr Banda was paid K5 billion. Did he share it with any person from the East apart from his family? So what does he mean when he says he is one of you and why should you listen to him? Let us think nationally and reject people like Mr Banda.
After these elections, there will be problems. The truth is that the PF will stop pretending just after elections and will stop importing power meaning massive load shedding will be restored. Thousands of miners will lose jobs, just wait and see. And then, despite the load shedding, the price of electricity will go up. Farmers will cry as the government will remove subsidies on fertiliser and other farming inputs. Fuel subsidies will be removed immediately. All the infrastructure projects started by Sata will be abandoned because there is no money to complete them. Contractors of all these projects have not ben paid since last year. In short, they will soon be white elephants.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has already said it will come just after elections. Some people might not know why the IMF is coming. Zambia has been borrowing money from Europe and America almost insanely for the past five years. You have heard of the Eurobond. Now the time to start repaying has come. But Zambia has no money to pay back to the Western commercial banks and other individual investors it borrowed money from. Zambia is about to record a sovereign default, that is, fail to pay its international debts. Now that can have dire consequences for the country. No one will ever lend Zambia money. That is where the IMF comes in. The IMF will pay Zambia’s loans. But note carefully: Zambia’s loans will not go away. Instead, Zambia will now owe the IMF the same amount. The debt will be transferred from original lenders to the IMF. Its like digging a pit to fill another pit. But IMF has conditions. It was the IMF that advised Zambia under Chiluba to sell the mines, council houses, reduce size of civil service, sell/privatise all state owned companies and close others. That situation is coming back.
The IMF is coming whether it is Lungu or HH who will win. But the difference between Lungu and HH is that HH can negotiate and is in position to say no at least to some things to the IMF. Lungu does not, in the first place understand what the IMF does. As the person who procured the loans and put Zambia in this crisis, he is in no position to say no.
And you Malawians, Mozambicans, Congolese, Tanzanians and other neighbours coming to vote, please we beseech you, vote for the opposition. The people who brought you here do not mean well. Imagine if your own government paid Zambians to come and vote in your country, how would you feel? Please vote for the opposition and help us fight these evil people.
We already said why we think you should not vote on the referendum. It’s a waste of time and meant to confuse voters. Please vote for the president, running mate, MPs, mayors and councillors. Leave those ears, eyes or such other silly symbols on the referendum blank. Don’t vote on the referendum. Leave it blank. It’s a waste of time.
Today we can start afresh. The economy can be rejuvenated with new, visionary leadership.
There is likely to be violence and other forms of violence in polling stations. Do not be afraid. It’ s by design, they want you to stay away from voting so that they impose a bad leader on you. Do not engage in retaliatory violence, for that is what they want you to do so that they close your polling station. Do whatever you can to make sure you vote. Do not stay at home and do not be discouraged by anything the PF does, just go and vote, vote for economic progress, development, unity and political stability.
Phone your friends, family and others and encourage them to vote. Make sure you vote whatever happens.