A little more than six months ago I did write a letter of encouragement to you. In that letter, I did encourage you on stepping up the game in running the country. I encouraged you to work hard to leave a lasting legacy. Sadly, my advise fell on deaf ears and hence my writing this letter of disappointment to you.
A lot has been happening in this country in the last few months. You have had a busy traveling schedule all over the region. Looks like we share the same hobby Mr. President after all. You know, I also enjoy traveling. But your wasting of taxpayer’s money traveling while there are so many pressing financial needs in the country worries me. It is disappointing Mr. President that you choose to travel to Zimbabwe and South Africa, with an entourage of over forty officials, while our hospitals were closed. Because you were having so much fun hopping up and down planes, you have developed a leg problem. Worse still, it is us who have to pay for your hospital bills in South Africa abandoning your own hospitals here in Zambia.
Mr. President, it was disappointing that it took you that long to make a statement regarding the state of affairs in the country. And what was that rant about at that press conference? Why did you spend half the time at the press conference talking about your political opponents? The press conference looked like an MMD cadres’ meeting. Well, I understand why you are so worried about those guys. Looks like things don’t look so well for you in 2011, do they?
Here are a few things that you should be worried about instead. Mr. President, you should be worried about the many Zambian people who are dying around the country due to the strikes by nurses and doctors. Please don’t threaten our medical workers with dismissal because that doesn’t make sense at all. Regarding their pay demands, I have a few suggestions for you as far as how you raise the money.
Firstly, propose a fifteen percent pay cut from all ministers, deputy ministers, permanent secretaries and all senior government officials including yourself. Imagine how much money could be raised from those pay cuts. This could cover the salaries of the nurses and doctors in Southern, Western and Eastern Provinces. Secondly, declare all deputy ministers redundant because there is nothing they are really doing. This will save taxpayers from paying their salaries, housing, phone bills, fuel, traveling, etc. Then we can sell all those big expensive cars they have so that we raise some money to pay for the salaries of nurses and doctors in Lusaka and Central Provinces . Instead of government spending K100 million a month on a deputy minister, it can pay for about seventy-five nurses. Lastly, my suggestion to you, Mr. President is that you make an executive order for non payment of midterm gratuity for all members of parliament and get the dormant funds at CEEC and channel them to pay salaries for the striking workers in all the other provinces. What a perfect way to set an example in a time of crisis. You will gain so much admiration from all around the country and make your 2011 plans legitimate.
These are just few of the many ideas that could help you rise amidst the crisis. However, you have chosen to remain in the background. Like I have observed before, if you are not taking your afternoon naps then you are in the air flying to Neverland. When you wake up from your naps, you go on television yelling and blaming everyone but yourself for the way things are going in the country. Things are going this way because you are sleeping at the wheel. While you were sleeping Mr. President, a minister bought costly hearses to bury us. While you were sleeping Soweto Market was demolished and the people of Sichifulo displaced so that animals can live in a land they occupied for generations. While you were sleeping, millions of dollars were stolen and the Ministry of Health. While you were sleeping nurses and doctors went on strike leaving scores of Zambians to die countrywide. While you were sleeping, Zambian Airways went under and Dora signed the Deal. Is it while you were sleeping that Zambia lost to Algeria?
You see that a lot of things can happen outside State House especially if you are sleeping. I know it is cozy in there and not too easy to come out and face the challenges of reality here. But hey, who says being president is a vacation? It is a tough and challenging job. Again, stop complaining about how tough your job is. If it is so tough then why don’t you leave the job for someone who really wants to be president? Maybe they won’t sleep so much. Maybe nurses won’t be on strike and people won’t die. And maybe for once Zambians will have a president they will all be proud of.
Thanks for your time Mr. President and good luck. And hey, if you want to me start drafting those dismissal letters for your deputy ministers I would be more than delighted to do it at no cost at all. This will be my service to my country.