The government has intensified its ‘offer’ of land to Zambians living outside the country.
Sources in government say this is a campaign project to entice registered voters in the Diaspora.
The MMD is currently funding the formation of Zambian residents association in countries with a big numbers of citizens.
These associations are in turn being used to woe support for the ruling party. They are coordinated through and report to local embassies or High Commissions.
It is through these associations that the land project is being ‘sold’.
Countries such as South Africa, Botswana and Malawi are high on the priority list because would-be voters in these countries can easily travel to Zambia to vote. Zambians in UK and USA are also targeted hence the need for embassies in these countries to verify that an applicant has enough money to travel to Zambia.
Sources say Zambian citizens associations will play a very important role in encouraging ‘members’ to go home and vote.
Currently, targeted emails are being circulated to Zambians in the Dispora to encourage them to buy land. Application forms are attached.
The catch is that the application forms have to be sent to the local Embassy or High commission for ‘signature.’
The application forms indicate that only the deputy High Commission or counselor can sign the application.
Applicants have the option of applying for Residential, Commercial, Agricultural, Industrial or special user plots.
Sources at one embassy explained to the Watchdog that, when the embassy receives the application, they will forward names to Lusaka where they will be checked against the voters roll.
Applicants who have registered to vote will qualify for the second round. Before the plots are actually given, applicants will be invited to attend seminars (propaganda sessions) where the MM will explain its economic agenda and what they have done so far. They explain why they need to continue being in power. These meetings will be held in the Diaspora though citizens associations.
A week ago, Zambians based in Malawi resolved to support the MMD Government’s development agenda under President Banda’s leadership.
The Zambians resident in Malawi who converged on the Zambian embassy in Lilongwe formed an organisation called the Association of Zambians in Malawi (AZM).
AZM deputy information and publicity secretary Bishop Victor Kalesha was quoted by government newspapers saying that Zambians resident in Malawi are impressed with the manner in which President Banda is managing national affairs.
“We held a meeting on Monday at the embassy where we formed an association and resolved to back Mr Banda who is doing a commendable job in terms of development,” Zambia’s deputy High Commissioner to Malawi Paul Katema said.