President Edgar Chagwa Lungu
Plot One, State House
21st June 2021
Dear Mr. President.
Ref: Tame Mr. Chishimba Kambwili: Save Your Legacy.
I humbly request you to tame Mr. Chishimba Kambwili not only as a way of showing respect to the legacy of Kenneth Kaunda and the values he stood, but also for the sake of your legacy, political interests and national unity.
Mr. Chishimba Kambwili, a member of the Patriotic Front has embarked on a dangerous and divisive ethnic based vote mobilization for your third term re-election bid.
I write this open letter to you Mr. President fully aware that 12th August may mark the end of your rule or indeed otherwise depending on the desires of the majority Zambian voters.
Whatever the case maybe, it is in your best interest that national unity is not undermined. I’m sure you would like to have a legacy that shall outlive and inspire generations to come when you leave power and gone to grace.
If you are voted back to power, I’m sure you would like to lead a united country, devoid of tribal and ethnic conflicts. We all know that a dividend country cannot prosper.
Mr President, you will recall that President Kaunda, refused to preside over a nation divided on tribal lines. On 5th February 1968, he announced his resignation before more than 300 deligates at Chilenje Hall. This, Mr President as you know is well documented in our national historical account as “A night without the President”.
Mr. President, I wish to remind you about the tears you shed in February of 2018 after visiting the genocide graves in Rwanda. I’m sure memories are still fresh and you wouldn’t wish to see that happen anywhere in the world later on in Zambia.
As a measure of how deeply touched you were by effects of ethnic division, you vowed to fight ethnic divisions and even suggested to remove “tribe” from our national registration card (NRC) though my recollection is that our NRC does not have this feature.
Mr. President, what happened in Rwanda may have many accounts and narratives. However one undeniable narrative is that the drive of ethnic division was designed, sponsored and implemented by political leaders in order to gain political advantage for their own interests.
Mr. President, what happened to Rwanda can happen to Zambia. We are are not any special. It would be very unfortunate if this happened under your reign Mr. President as it would be a massive betrayal to the values we hold so dear as a nation as promoted and demonstrated by Kenneth Kaunda whose legacy you must uphold.
Mr. President, I and many other citizens are greatly concerned with the manner in which your party members are mobilizing votes for you using tribal propaganda especially against the Tonga speaking people, majority of which are domiciled in Southern Zambia.
Although the list of those engaged in tribal politics in your party is long, I have specifically pointed out Mr. Chishimba Kambwili because of his past behavior, which you don’t need any account as you too Mr. President got a fair share of his venom.
Mr. President, many believe that Mr. Chishimba Kambwili has your blessings to mobilize votes for you. There is nothing wrong with you assigning him to do that. You need every single vote as this election looks very tight.
However, I don’t know and believe if Mr. Chishimba Kambwili has your blessings Mr. President to drive a tribal agenda. Some people argue that Mr. Chishimba Kambwili has your blessings in abundance.
Mr. President, it would be sad indeed if it is true that Mr. Kambwili has your blessings. The route that he has taken is detrimental to national unity, your legacy and re-election chances. It is a danger to the spirit of one Zambia one nation as espoused by Kenneth Kaunda.
Mr. President, when you fired Mr. Chishimba Kambwili as Minister of Information, he went and apologized to the Tonga speaking people for his tribal sentiments while in government and PF. Our people still remember what he said then.
Today, he has gone back to the same ways, he denounced in the name of mobilizing votes for you, joining several others in your camp including your running mate carrying tribal tags. This is very sad and unfortunate.
Mr. President, this makes citizens to wonder. Is tribal mobilization the official startergy for your party? Do you Mr. President agree with tribalism in general and the manner in which Chishimba Kambwili is mobilizing in particular? If you don’t agree, why have you allowed him to continue dividing the nation on tribal lines?
Mr. President, you are the Head of the Country and Patriotic Front Party. I’m sure overtime, you have heard your members engage in tribal politics. Would it be wrong for citizens to conclude that your palpable silence over tribal remarks attributed to a number of high ranking officials in government and party are a sign of endorsement of tribalism by you as the head?
Mr. President, as a sign of your commitment to our shared and cherished national values of one Zambia one Nation, I humbly request that you publicly reprimand Mr. Chishimba Kambwili and stop him from mobilizing votes for you with immediate effect.
That way, you would help reunite the nation, win the hearts of some voters and more importantly preserve your legacy and our long held value of unity.
I wish you God’s grace and guidance as you lead the nation till 12th August 2021