Open Letter to Given Lubinda
By Eros Ilunga
Dear Mr Lubinda,
I thought I should write to an open letter from my hearts of hearts given what you are currently going through and generally the state of things in our nation. Mr Lubinda, you have been an honourable man and to me you are one of the few in that Parliament who deserve to be called ‘honourable’. Honour does not come by assuming a position in society or by demanding to be called ‘honorable’ as most of our parliamentarians do; it is a virtue that comes by our conduct in the public eye. It cannot be demanded but can only be commanded.
But you have demonstrated honour since you took to public life. You have fearlessly spoken for the poor and down-trodden majority. You have stood for honesty, justice and fairness. And your record speaks for yourself. Little wonder that you left a much better public media when you were Information minister. Little wonder too that the president had to give you the combined portfolios of Tourism and Foreign Affairs. You have excelled wherever you have worked and done us proud. That, no one will ever take from you not even your newfound enemies!
Now let’s get to the issue at hand. What you are going through reflects the deep-rooted rot in our political system. It is an orchestrated plan to get rid of you by those who perceive you to be a threat to their political ambitions. For example, some people claimed you have not been performing as an MP so they were now petitioning for your removal. Granted, when did these constituents realize your shortcomings? Why did all this hullabaloo begin immediately after Wynter Kabimba wrote the charge letter? Coincidence or conspiracy? How can they accuse you of treachery against the party you have sacrificed so much for?
My Lubinda, I think you know exactly what is happening in your party because you are a very intelligent man. Your enemies may succeed to delete you from the party’s membership roll and of course from your ministerial position. Alternatively you may just decide to quit. That is all up to you. My earnest appeal to you is to take time to reflect deeply before you make your next move.
First of all reflect on why your popularly elected party is slowly sinking in the quagmire, in fact making most of the mistakes of the once all-powerful MMD. What is wrong with the leadership of PF? Why has this party so suddenly deviated from tenets of democracy and embraced cronyism, corruption, intolerance and patronage? Why has PF failed to be different from UNIP and MMD? What role have you played in all this and how can you do things better? This in my view will help you to make a good decision.
Secondly, do not make a decision that is hasty and reactionary. Listen to the majority of Zambians and go by the will of the people. A lot of Zambians hold you in high esteem and in some circles people feel you are among few politicians who can make good presidents. So do not make political miscalculations. Sometimes going quiet is what wakes well (remember Mwanawasa?). When you left UPND you joined ULP and shortly PF. Being in PF was good for you because it has exposed you widely and Zambians know who you really are. In PF you have been a rare gem, unequalled principled and unparalled.
Lastly may I end by stating that Zambia currently is suffering consequences of failed leadership from a party that held so much hope and promise. Many Zambians today are disillusioned because they expected so much and a lot better from PF. That is why many are embarrassed to criticize PF and have fallen into conspiracy of silence because they feel they are responsible for creating PF. What role will you play to make Zambia better? This is my encouragement and challenge to you.
I wish you God’s wisdom and strength as you fight you battles. May you come out better and more useful to Zambia.