Zambia is again isolating itself from the international community by the absence of President Michael Sata at the AU summit on AIDS/HIV, Tuberculosis and Malaria currently being held Abuja, Nigeria. I was at the Abuja airport yesterday evening en route Lagos and noticed a flurry of VIP movements, which is not unusual for Abuja. However, having checked in for my flight to Lagos, I noticed on the apron, presidential jets from Kenya, Ethiopia, Congo DRC, Namibia, Ghana and all.
I instantly knew the protocol movements I had seen earlier was not the usual Nigerian State Governors arriving for a meeting in Abuja, but a continental meeting of African leaders. Amidst the numerous private jets at the apron, my eyes were looking for the Challenger jet with Republic of Zambia boldly inscribed on it. Alas, it was not there! I thought to myself, it is still early and surely MCS must be airborne. Quickly, I checked online sites, ZWD, on my iPad for news releases from ZANIS announcing the president will be in Abuja but all I saw was that Sata was due to swear in some unknown relatives into some unknown office at 8am on Monday!
Oh, mother Zambia I thought to myself. How have we sank so low in International affairs, of leadership in the region, and of shaping opinions in Africa. Oh, Mother Zambia of KK, the bulwark of the struggle for the liberation of Africa. Zambia of FTJ that ushered a free and open society. Oh Zambia that Mwanamwasa opened to free market. Mother Zambia of RB, the friend of all nations. Why, I thought to myself, why is Zambia missing in this conference? A conference that intends to address afflictions killing our people! Why?
Today, I monitored the news to find out if anyone is representing MCS at the conference. While Rwanda, Burkina Faso, Malawi, Cameroun and other African countries were mentioned, nothing mentioned about Mother Zambia; Not even the High Commissioner (do we even have one??)
We the Zambian people need to ask Mr. MICHAEL SATA to come out his comfort zone in plot 1 and lead, lead not Zambia, but lead Africa, what we have always done from colonial times to September 2011.
Jack Zulu, Lagos.