What president Banda said on labour day

WORKERS OF ZAMBIA,

TODAY’S HOLIDAY CELEBRATES YOUR ACHIEVEMENTS. TODAY, ALL OVER THE WORLD, WORKERS ARE UNITING IN SOLIDARITY. TODAY, THE WORLD RECOGNISES THE ROLE YOU PLAY IN BUILDING STRONG SOCIETIES, STRONG ECONOMIES AND STRONG NATIONS.

TO ALL OF YOU WHO WORK HARD EACH DAY, TO ALL OF YOU WHO CONTRIBUTE SELFLESSLY EACH DAY TO A BETTER ZAMBIA – I SALUTE YOU.

ZAMBIA IS GROWING, OUR EDUCATION STANDARDS ARE RISING, THE HEALTH OF THE NATION IS GETTING BETTER AND OUR ECONOMIC PERFORMANCE IS IMPROVING BY THE MONTH.

WHEN I VISIT OTHER COUNTRIES, PEOPLE COMPLIMENT ME ON THE REPUTATION OF ZAMBIA’S WORKFORCE. BUSINESSES COME FROM ALL OVER THE WORLD TO INVEST IN ZAMBIA BECAUSE OF YOU. WE ARE A HARDWORKING, SKILLED AND HOPE-DRIVEN PEOPLE – AND TOGETHER WE ARE BUILDING A COUNTRY WHICH WE CAN ALL BE PROUD OF.

I KNOW THAT POLITICIANS WOULD LIKE TO CLAIM ALL THE CREDIT BUT THE FACT IS THAT TO DEVELOP A BETTER ZAMBIA REQUIRES TEAMWORK. THE MOST IMPORTANT PLAYERS IN THAT TEAM ARE THE WORKERS. POLITICIANS AND BUSINESS LEADERS CAN HAVE ALL THE BEST IDEAS IN THE WORLD, BUT WITHOUT WORKERS TO IMPLEMENT THEM, THEY ARE NOTHING.

WORKERS COME IN ALL SHAPES AND SIZES, FROM ALL WALKS OF LIFE. SOME DO GLAMOUROUS JOBS. SOME DO DANGEROUS JOBS. YET OTHERS HAVE DIFFICULT OR MUNDANE JOBS. THERE ARE THOSE WHO EARN MORE MONEY THAN OTHERS. SOME HAVE PLEASANT WORKING HOURS. BUT THEN THERE ARE TOO MANY PEOPLE WITHOUT JOBS. THEY ARE ON MY MIND ALL THE TIME.

SO TODAY, AS THE FOURTH PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF ZAMBIA, I WANT TO PERSONALLY THANK YOU ALL FOR WHAT YOU DO FOR OUR BELOVED COUNTRY. YOU MAKE IT HAPPEN, YOU ARE ZAMBIA.

MY FELLOW ZAMBIANS,

OUR COUNTRY IS PROSPERING BUT THE HARD WORK AND ACHIEVEMENTS ARE DOWN TO YOUR EFFORTS.   IT IS NOT HARD TO SEE WHY THE WORLD VALUES ZAMBIA. OUR MINING SECTOR IS GOING FROM STRENGTH TO STRENGTH. THIS YEAR, OUR ANNUAL COPPER PRODUCTION WILL BREAK THE ONE MILLION TONNES BARRIER. POLITICIANS DO NOT DIG FOR COPPER, THE MINERS DO. I MUST, THEREFORE, APPLAUD EVERY INDIVIDUAL MINER.

THE 2009/2010 GROWING SEASON SAW OUR FARMERS PRODUCE A RECORD CROP. THIS NEXT YEAR, GOD WILLING, ZAMBIA IS TO PROVIDE YET ANOTHER BUMPER CROP. POLITICIANS DO NOT GROW MAIZE, FARMERS DO.

MORE AND MORE ROADS AND BRIDGES ARE BEING BUILT OR REHABILITATED; MORE INSTITUTIONAL HOUSES BEING ERECTED; MORE SCHOOLS AND CLINICS BEING BUILT. POLITICIANS DO NOT BUILD WITH BRICKS AND CEMENT, WORKERS DO.

WE ARE PROVIDING MORE CLASSROOMS, BUT POLITICIANS DO NOT TEACH IN THE CLASSROOMS; TEACHERS DO. WE ARE PUTTING UP HOSPITALS AND HEALTH CENTRES. POLITICIANS DO NOT TREAT THE ILL AND INFIRM, DOCTORS AND NURSES DO.

MY FELLOW ZAMBIANS,

YOU WELL KNOW THAT I LOVE FOOTBALL. A COACH CAN TRAIN A TEAM BUT ONCE THE WHISTLE GOES IT IS UP TO THE TEAM TO DELIVER ON THE FIELD OF PLAY. THOSE ELEVEN PLAYERS MUST BOND TOGETHER AS ONE. THEY MUST DEFEND AND ATTACK TOGETHER. IT DOES NOT MATTER WHO SCORES THE GOAL: WHEN THE FINAL WHISTLE SOUNDS, THE ENTIRE TEAM IS VICTORIOUS.  AS PRESIDENT,  I AM LIKE THAT COACH.

IT IS YOU THE WORKERS WHO MUST DEFEND FOR ZAMBIA, YOU MUST ATTACK FOR ZAMBIA AND ONLY YOU CAN WIN FOR ZAMBIA.

IT IS HARD WORK THAT WILL BUILD TOMORROW’S ZAMBIA.

IT IS TEAMWORK THAT WILL BUILD TOMORROW’S ZAMBIA.

AS A TYPE OF COACH, I WILL CONTINUE IN MY GOAL OF BRINGING MORE FOREIGN INVESTMENT TO STRENGTHEN TEAM ZAMBIA.  OUR ECONOMY HAS SEEN STEADY GROWTH OF OVER 7 PER CENT, HELPING TO BOOST EMPLOYMENT AND HELP TO SET THE FOUNDATIONS OF A SECURE AND PROSPEROUS FUTURE.

TODAY ZAMBIA IS THE INVESTMENT PLACE IN SOUTHERN AFRICA. LAST YEAR ALONE, ZAMBIA ATTRACTED INVESTMENTS WORTH US$2 BILLION, WITH 18,000 NEW BUSINESSES REGISTERED. THE WORLD BELIEVES IN ZAMBIA, THE WORLD HAS CONFIDENCE IN ZAMBIA. WE ARE APPROACHING A PLACE WHERE ZAMBIA WILL NOT FAIL. I KNOW THAT ZAMBIA WILL CONTINUE TO DELIVER AND IN DOING SO WILL ATTRACT EVEN MORE INVESTORS.

INVESTMENT MEANS MORE JOBS FOR ZAMBIANS. INVESTMENT ALSO DEMANDS MORE SKILLS. WHAT IS THE POINT OF INVITING INVESTORS TO OPEN A FACTORY IF WE DO NOT HAVE THE PROPER WORKFORCE TO MAN IT? WHAT IS THE POINT OF MANUFACTURING IF WE CANNOT GET PRODUCTS TO A MARKET?

IN THE LIGHT OF THIS, IT IS THE JOB OF MY GOVERNMENT TO SUPPORT ALL WORKERS AND HELP THOSE LOOKING FOR WORK. WE MUST PROVIDE POLICIES WHICH DELIVER BETTER HEALTHCARE, BETTER ROADS, GOOD QUALITY EDUCATION AND THE RIGHT INVESTMENT OPPORTUNITIES TO KEEP THE WORLD INTERESTED IN ZAMBIA.

MY FELLOW ZAMBIANS,

IT IS THROUGH JOBS AND EMPLOYMENT THAT WE WILL ALL HAVE THE SECURITY WE STRIVE FOR. THERE IS SECURITY IN KNOWING THAT YOU HAVE A REGULAR PAY PACKET; KNOWING THAT YOU CAN PROVIDE FOR YOUR FAMILY; KNOWING THAT YOUR CHILDREN ARE FED, CLOTHED AND IN SCHOOL. IN A BROADER SENSE, OUR COMMUNITIES ENJOY SECURITY WHEN THE ABUNDANCE OF JOB OPPORTUNITIES REDUCES THE CRIME RATE.

WHEN ALL ARE SHARING IN PROSPERITY BEING CREATED THERE IS A SENSE OF FULFILMENT AND BELONGING. I MAKE NO APOLOGY FOR MY DETERMINATION TO GET MORE JOBS FOR ZAMBIANS. AFTER THE ELECTIONS LATER THIS YEAR, I INTEND TO CONTINUE MY EFFORTS TO BRING MORE AND MORE JOBS TO ZAMBIA.

I WANT ALL ZAMBIANS TO SHARE IN OUR NATION’S PROSPERITY. I DO NOT WANT TO SEE THE UNEMPLOYED LEFT BEHIND AS ZAMBIA GOES FORWARD. IT IS OUR COLLECTIVE DUTY TO MAKE SURE WE ARE ALL STEPPING FORWARD ABREAST. THAT IS WHY CREATING MORE JOBS IS SO IMPORTANT TO ME.

I ONCE ASKED A WOMAN, “WHAT DO YOU DO?” SHE REPLIED, “I DO NOT WORK, I STAY AT HOME, I AM A MOTHER.”

SHE WAS VERY WRONG. WOMEN LIKE HER DO THE MOST IMPORTANT JOB OF ALL ZAMBIANS. BEING A MOTHER IS THE MOST FULL-TIME JOB I CAN THINK OF. MOTHERS ARE ON DUTY 24 HOURS A DAY, SEVEN DAYS A WEEK, 52 WEEKS OF THE YEAR. MOTHERS DO NOT GO ON HOLIDAY; THEY DO NOT GET PAID; THEY ARE NOT ALLOWED TO FALL ILL.

MOTHERS ARE NURSES, TEACHERS, DISCIPLINARIANS, COOKS, TAILORS AND COMFORTERS. MOTHERS ARE THE GUARDIANS OF OUR FUTURE. MY GOVERNMENT MAY HAVE A DREAM OF BUILDING TOMORROW’S ZAMBIA TODAY, BUT THE TASK REALLY LIES IN OUR MOTHERS’ HANDS.

TODAY’S CHILDREN ARE TOMORROW’S ADULTS; THEY ARE ZAMBIA’S FUTURE WORKERS. THE JOBS WE ARE CREATING WILL BE PASSED ON TO THEM. OUR CHILDREN ARE A PRECIOUS RESOURCE WHOM WE MUST NURTURE AND INSPIRE. BUT IT ALL STARTS IN THE HOME, AT HOME WITH MOTHERS AND FATHERS. TO THE MOTHERS OF ZAMBIA, I SAY YOU HOMEMAKERS ARE THE UNSUNG WORKERS – I SALUTE YOU.

IT WAS IN 2008 THAT I MADE THE SOLEMN PROMISE TO BE A PRESIDENT FOR ALL ZAMBIANS. I COMMITTED TO DELIVER FOR ALL ZAMBIANS. ALL ZAMBIANS MUST HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO WORK – TO EARN A GOOD WAGE IN A COUNTRY WHERE NO FAMILY GOES HUNGRY AND WHERE WE CAN ALL FLOURISH OUT OF A PROSPEROUS ECONOMY.

ON LABOUR DAY OF ALL DAYS, EVERY HARDWORKING ZAMBIAN SHOULD BE APPLAUDED FOR HELPING TO REALIZE THIS AMBITION.    APPLAUD YOU, YOUR COUNTRY APPLAUDS YOU.

 

THANK YOU.

 

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