POLITICAL VIOLENCE, POOR LEADERSHIP – A SHARED BLAME
Lucky Mulusa, MP.
One of the lamentable failures of contemporary politics is that it is easier to destroy than to build. Systems and procedures that took society several years to build can be frustrated, destroyed and completely done away with by any inexperienced and incompetent politician or by intelligent but selfish individuals crafting their own paths for personal benefit. The harm that politics can do is impressive to the evil mind and it is often used to satisfy personal motives not extending any further than the clique that surrounds misplaced leadership.
Regarding the youths who are inflicting humiliation and perpetrating violence and pain on leaders, solutions for their plight are needed. Let us not condemn them. Condemnation should be reserved for the misplaced leaders who are using them. These youths suffer to make enough to buy a loaf of bread in a day. There is absolutely no way they can waste litres of chibuku on Father Bwalya unless somebody paid for it and promised other incentives.
I look at a youth in the name of Bowman Lusambo, who is both a perpetrator and a victim of violence. He can shamelessly do anything for small change from his handler. The question is: For how long will Lusambo and other youths continue accepting to be abused and remain misguided youths? Will he reach 50 years old doing the same stuff? What will he tell his children about his career? I am praying for him. But then Lusambo and other youths involved in all these despicable acts need more than salvation. They need skills, jobs and many other opportunities. Let us get the message these youths are sending to all of us through these despicable and unchristian behaviours.
On leaders behind the sponsoring of youths to commit evil, these are individuals with low thinking capacities. These individuals are failures in leadership and cannot earn permanence of tenure through performance evidenced by good results. I have condemned the use of misguided youths to insult, confront, and physically attack one’s perceived enemies as was done with Major Kachingwe, Bowman Lusambo himself, Father Bwalya and in the BIGOCA incidence. The culture of failing to confront reality as a leader and resorting to using desperate measures of intimidation are an unfortunate development in our culture. The unfortunate thing is that the youths being used are the same ones for whose welfare, one should have, in the first instance, gone into politics to craft solutions for.
The youths involved in acts of violence are not the only ones who are destructive in our society. As I campaigned in the recent bye-elections, I noticed one peculiar characteristic amongst the voters – disengagement from the values of voting, commercialisation of the vote, and lack of trust for politicians amongst many negative traits. We the politicians have cheated and fooled voters once too many times and the voters have decided to beat us at our own game. They have commercialised the vote! He who pays and does all sorts of wrong things emerges victorious. Few places remain where the vote is driven by the message and common concern for development. It’s done! The vote has been commercialised and has lost the essence for which voting as we knew it was crafted.
The youths as well are up for hire to commit all manner of violence. The politician stated it all with false promises. This situation is a threat to our co-existence as a peaceful functional state.
The solution to our plight as a nation requires a multifaceted approach and a leadership that is equal to the task. The Zambian paradox of rich nation poor citizens requires trans/inter-disciplinary, technical and broad-spectrum minds on the part of those standing up to be leaders in Zambia. The complexities of Zambia’s challenges have no space for passengers who want to assume high office just for the sake of it. Society needs to be more responsible with its decisions during elections. Youths need to be more resilient to temptation to avoid falling into wrong ways but more than that, we owe them opportunities during their formative years.
Lucky Mulusa, MP.
Solwezi Central Constituency