Change with Economic Continuity

Some projects started by the MMD government that the PF government may have to continue for the benefit of Zambia

By Chibamba Kanyama

The success of the economic policies of the Michael Sata-led government will depend on the speedy and open adoption of the programmes initiated by the previous regime.

It has been a common practice in Zambia that whenever there is a regime change, leaders embark on wholesome and sudden reversal of economic priorities instead of adopting a much more effective strategy of ‘change with continuity’.

While it holds true that some of the economic programmes may have been corruptly executed, reversing them in totality would be like throwing away the baby with bath water. It should be clearly understood that Zambia will never experience significant economic gains if every government that comes into power starts to build the economy from the foundation by failing to incorporate programmes that may have yielded positive gains.

It is against this backdrop that I support the offer by former Finance Minister Situmbeko Musokotwane that he be consulted on the utilisation of funds that will be realised from the issue of the international bond.

The proposal to issue the US $500 million bond was initiated by the MMD government. The fact that Finance Minister Alexander Chikanda has included this money in the 2012 budget is sufficient testimony that the success of the current government will depend on collaboration and organic transition of economic policies and priorities of the defunct MMD government.It was against this very backdrop that Mr Chikwanda told parliament during the budget announcement that his government still faced the obligation to finish some projects contracted by the MMD government .

However, it is not enough to just fulfill contractual obligations but to carry on with these projects because some of them were well crafted and already have a positive impact on the Zambian economy.

This can be done without compromising the need to investigate and prosecute corrupt activities of the previous regime during the project implementation processes.


  1. vote

    I agree with you on this one. let us not just throw away everything but done an analysis on which programs worked and which one didn’t. After that improve those that worked and devise new ones to replace those that didn’t work.

  2. vote

    Any sane person will take up this advise with both hands. But it is always difficult for kaponyas to listen because they always think people will say they are not thinking. You can’t have a government which kills all the things that the previous government had done like it happened with Chiluba who sold almost everything that Kaunda had left.These include UBZ,all the mines,Lencor and Zambia Airways,the list goes on.

  3. vote

    chibamba kanyama is a fake economist, he has no paper in economist.nowonder they say an empty bucket make alot of noise. he only studied 4 subjects at the university of zambia and he is claiming to know economics. just keep quite to avoid embarassing yourself.

  4. vote

    # 4 Empty tanks make even louder noise than buckets!!

    This subject is not only for economists! Chibamba has not said any thing remotely crazy here! Let those who have no brains just shut up.

  5. vote

    @think tank, You are very right chibamba has no paper in “economist” and so are all other economists out there.
    Doctors advise their clients to do as they say and not as they do. Let’s handle issues raised on this forum objectively and put substantial contributions.

  6. vote

    True. Let there be continuity. The difference will be how the projects are delivered. In fact, praise will come when projects are completed. Please PF get to work. No more just talk or witch hunting. Let the security forces and courts deal with wrong doers. 90 days is on the 23rd of December. You have 11 days. LOL

  7. vote

    Typical behavior and reaction from # 4. lets not focus on seeing only bad in what we think Rupiah did. Look on the bright side, embrace what is progressive and together we move the country forward. FTJ lost track when he went out of his way to try and prove KK’s guilt. Same with Levy….lets let the agencies charged with that responsibility deal with it. For now, let the government embrace the positive aspects of the MMD leadership and move forward.:d

  8. vote

    you do not need to have a PhD in economics to make sound economic decision. economics is part of everyday living. people, educated and uneducated, make economic decisions on a daily basis. economics is about our daily lives. criminals, prostitutes, poor, homosapianes name make economic decisions and do economics in one way or the other. chibamba is educated enough and does not need to have a phd in economics to rationalised what the government is doing about the 500m$ bond. in fact 4 solid economics courses are good enough to earn one a phd. ba zambia ubututu too much!!!!

  9. vote

    Honestly can`t believe Zambians. If you want to develop, make sure you reduce corruption.

    Turning a blind eye will not take us anywhere. We will be down in a spiral if we say we just have to move on. Whether good or bad, if things were done corruptly, it`s not right. What signal are you sending to the PF government if you say embrace the good things they did even though they were done in a corrupt way? All you are telling H.E MCS and his group is, go out there, score a few points but steal!

    Why is corruption seen as a part of everyday life openly in Africa?

  10. vote

    Am failing to understand what Kanyama is saying. Policies of political parties are crafted in their manifestos. Let the PF craft their policies according to what their manifesto says. Are you implying that what the PF will be doing will not be good to the economy? If the MMD did it, maybe the PF can do it better. And yes it is true. kabamba is not an economist. He read mass communications as his major and economics as his minor. But off course he has the  right contribute to the body of economics like any other Zambian. What is wrong is to refer to him as an Economist.

  11. vote

    @bamwine, you sound very dull like chibamba kanyama. my simple question is were did kanyama studied his economics from?. is bringing this basic economics to the public making somebody learned? Let mcs bring development issues as he has planned, and he should not be associate with corrupt MMD projects.

  12. vote

    ThinkTank, you just have to read Chibamba Kanyama’s two books and you will have great respect for this rare personality. Did you know that the current Minister of Finance consults Chibamba at the moment? I was there at the George Bush reception and I heard it with ears Chikwanda appreciating Chibamba for much of the advice he has made in writing to his office. No person with no understanding of economics can have this influence.

  13. vote

    #4 You are a silly monkey. The article is not about the writer’s CV, but rather it articulates brilliantly on what ought to be done in order to develop this great nation. The MMD might have tolerated corruption, but they also initiated a lot of projects which could be the bedrock of economic development if carefully carried through. RB and his MMD government left behind a healthy economy and one of the fastest growing GDP in SADC region

  14. vote

    Lekeni ifyabupuba imwe. Chibamba is right and the PF government is wise enough to choose progressive programmes left behind by the MMD. So far the PF has not done any wholesale abandonment of the MMD good projects. they have infact embraced many. What will change is the thrust, vigour, speed and seriousness of implementation on well articulated policies of the PF. We dont want to entrench the culture of corruption like the MMD did. Change is gonna be done gradually, at least not in 90 days.

    Yes ba Chibamba, we are going to implement the good projects planned by MMD but we shall also implement many of those we planned ourselves which will even improve the lives of many poor Zambians, like rural infrastructure. Connectivity for example.

  15. vote

    Fighting corruption using the reverse gear will not put money in people’s pockets. The very reasons why we think the previuos government was corrupt still exist, such as weak institutional capacity to detect corruption on spot. Even the current administration will have its own scandles, like Mwanawasa’s case. I believe there is nothing Sata so far has done to fight corruption except selective wicthhunt, to the extent that an ordinary Zambian only believes fighting cirruption is to investigate and arrest MMD officials. Chibamba Kanyama is right, such that this fake corruption fight which only ends if MMD officials are arrested does not derail real progress. By the way am also an economist like Chibamba and I don’t display my CV on the blog.

  16. vote

    No 14
    What different policies can PF bring to Zambia which MMD never addressed? lets not kid our selves, Zambia needs better roads, hospitals, school, higher education institutes, housing. What more do you need? Unless PF wants to send a Zambian to the moon i do not see anything better they can bring to the table. The fact that the minister of finance said they will continue with MMD projects means just two things

    1. PF can not formulate any policy
    2. PF can not put anything better than the MMD has put in the 6th National Development Plan

    My occlusion is a combination of 1 and 2.
    The question is after  5 years we need to measure PF and MMD track record.  Kabamba is right you do not just change the core policies of national development just because you want to prove a point. 

  17. vote

    Italian Bunga Bunga #19, you have a good question. Real fight against corruption starts with strenthening institutional capacity. We are not to be left to the goodwill of an incumbent President to fight corruption. Good example is Botswana’s governance system that does not leave much room for public officials to abuse resources. It is not enough to follow up old cases and arrest the corrupt. The investigative wings, ACC, DEC, Police must have institutional cxapacity to detect and prevent corruption, or introduce the leadership code of connduct. The other weak part of this corruption fight is inclined towards the demand side and not putting to account the people supplying cooruption incentives. In short, the only one under question is the recipient and not the supplier of corruption.

  18. vote

    The reality and facts is that the MMD has laid a solid foundation of economic development of Zambia. Implementation is what is required. The next phase of Zambia’s development need to be a strong constitution which will strengthen the pillars of democracy and governance. This will enable the functioning of state institutions with out political interference. The rights of every Zambian to be equal before the law, the right to petition government by citizens on decisions taken. 

  19. vote

    C K keep up the good works. Am happy that our local Economist can give such generic analysis and solutions to our problems here in Zambia. Keep up the good works!!
    PF should take your Advise without fail.  

  20. vote

    While chibamba mighty have good intentions on high lighting these economic issues, am deeply disappointed that at the end of his article he has enbraced corruption to continue by encouraging PF government to continue implementing even some projects that were intiated through corruption. Eg some of those projects RB started at last minutes 3 months before elections were suspect.

  21. vote

    What projects has PF initiated so far? State house rehab? Fuel reduction? Honestly, I cannot think or see anything. Some of you are really pontificating about corruption fight, but can people eat anti-corruption fight. Levy spent how long trying to put Kafupi in the chooks who somehow managed to put KK in the chooks on trumped up charges? You will be in the same situation with RB, but meanwhile RB will remain walking free and proud and being called by high calibre leaders for consultation. Watch the space as is commonly said nowadays.

  22. vote

    @Kayi, you r a danderhead, r those two books worth reading and to say chibamba advises chikwanda, you must be insane, do u know that chikwanda is more advanced in economics for him to consult this empty tin who just makes noise

  23. vote

    Guys you like saying making comments before you find out. What is generally agreed and accepted is that Zambia will follow a democratic political dispensation. that is one. Two, that we shall follow the liberalised economy, dictated by market forces, where free market enterprise and individual entrepreneurship shall rule.Where government has little business in business except to facilitate or provide a condusive environment by way of good policies for business and investment to flow. The role of government is provision of social infrastructure for communication, education, health, security, justice, good governance and all that. It means that this is the framework for any political party agenda. PF is following this but adds a different dimension of pragmatism. MMD did 20 yrs while PF 3mon

  24. vote

    Whua on a different note. When is CEEC going 2 start disbursing funds to deserving project proposals? We want to expand our bizneses so that we contrbute to the building up of the economy. At least a response to our applications is enough!

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