The veteran politician and Zambia’s new Vice Dr. Guy Scott had made quite baffling assertions in an interview with the UK’s Guardian newspaper – Tuesday’s edition (4/10/2011). We have known Guy Scott for many years and frankly, there is nothing astounding about his colour. In fact we have known him as a Zambian muzungu (Zambian white).
He represents a small group of whites who have consistently lived in Zambia since the colonial days. Usually such families will have only the parents living in Zambia after their children emigrated back to the “mother country”.
However, it seems that indeed this individual has colonial hang-over. In the said interview, Scott was of the view that he was elected due to the fact that: “People are nostalgic, not for exploitation and division, but for the standards of colonial times.
When you went to the hospital there was medicine, when you went to schools there were books, when you went to the shops there were goods to buy.” Now what kind of hogwash is this? We the members of the Social Democratic Congress (SDC) unequivocally state that this romantic version of colonial rule never existed in Zambia as our people were made to buy food and other essential commodities through pigeon holes at the back of shops; were denied education and remained illiterate and disenfranchised. Scott must not lie to the world about colonialism in Zambia.
The United Nations Mission to Zambia in 1964 noted that 73% of African males and 93% of African females over the age of 16 were illiterate, meaning that they had not completed at least four years of primary school education. For a population of about 3.4 million people, there were less than 10,000 hospital beds, less than 700 nurses and less than 400 doctors. Now which heaven on earth is Scott referring to?
We would like to remind Guy Scott that the youth who voted for his party, the Patriotic Front (PF), do not have any inkling of what colonialism entailed, later on the One-Party state of Kenneth Kaunda.
Many of us in the SDC were born in the 1960s and grew up in a prosperous Zambia where we were taught to be proud of being black. This was before Kaunda became obsessed with power.
We do not subscribe to the misguided notion of “white is right”. Therefore it is quite dangerous for him to peddle bizarre racial opinions – willy-nilly. He must take care and refrain from such inflammatory statements. We would like to remind him that Vice-Presidents have come and gone in Zambia, and that there is nothing special about him. Moreover, he forms part of the club of retirees who are running our country today. But our time is coming.
Abash baas mentality abash!