Stop knee jerk reactions NAREP tells PF
President Michael Sata castigated his ministers for not telling the Zambians what his government had achieved over the two years. He went on to say they were lucky because there was no opposition in Zambia. These statements were attributed to the President during a meeting for PF leaders and cabinet ministers and during the swearing in ceremony for the Ministers of Information and Lands.
The aforesaid statements attracted varying responses from stakeholders, including NAREP, outlining the reasons why the ministers had nothing to tell Zambians in its statement of 20th September, 2013.
NAREP is disappointed that the Chief Government Spokesperson chose to counsel NAREP and failed to respond to the issues raised in the statement. We wish to reiterate that NAREP will not depart from issue-based politics.
We encourage the chief government spokesperson and other leaders to take a leaf from the Republican Vice President, Dr Guy Scott, who has admitted that the two years of PF rule have been difficult. This is objectivity at its best. Dr Scott knows that:
- Zambia is still the home of load shedding,
- Our education and health services are still far from optimal for the majority of the citizens,
- The agricultural policy is still in tatters,
- The constitution making process is still shrouded in mystery,
- Numerous youths are still roaming the streets-jobless,
- PF cadres are a menace to those with divergent views,
- Entrepreneurs are being flushed out of business because of unfair competition from the so called investors- the list is endless.
We encourage the chief government spokesperson to take a moment of silence and ponder over these issues and give an appropriate response and not a reaction. For now, we have heard enough about the roads.
Unless drastic measures are taken to address these pertinent issues, the next three years will be harder. We agree with Dr Scott that the excitement must now die and it is time to serve Zambia with the diligence that the voters lined up to vote for you and defended the vote to the hilt.
NAREP proposes the following for the next three years:
1.Normalize the size of cabinet: There is no need to continue with more than one deputy minister per ministry. We are certain that the beneficiaries of the bloated government have been rewarded enough. Retire the tired NOW; those whose energies have dwindled and can only work for the stomach-and they are many.
2.Provide leadership for national development: Please stop stifling debate and stopping opposition leaders from meeting the Zambians. Opposition leaders cannot even attend national functions for fear of your cadres. That rowdy behavior at Parliament during the official opening is unacceptable.
3.Work on policies that support development: implement your talk on empowering Zambians through stopping unfair trade, have a second look on the removal of subsidies.
4.Commence value addition on all our raw materials: This will create jobs and we will make more money as a nation from our resources.
5.Consult NAREP on job creation: You will lose nothing to try out the Empowerment and Employment Plan which NAREP has thoughtfully crafted.
It is our hope that a more sober approach will be taken in responding to our well- intended advice to your government.