There is no place like home
The relevance of having Dual citizenship in Zambia, far outweighs the downside to the enforcement of that statute. One of the most fundamental purposes of governance- every kind of governance, but more so, a democracy, is to serve the given democratic country’s citizens through the upholding of the basic human rights that form the emblem of that political ideology.
If the government of any nation finds itself in a shameful plight of failing to meet the demands of the basic needs of its citizens- healthcare, employment and education- just to name a few of those human rights, the citizens of that particular nation have an unquestionable right to flee from the oppressive environment of their own nation and seek their desired socioeconomic benefits in another country- if the opportunity allows. That survival instinct in those types of citizens; that application of common sense, should not only be admired and applauded, but be given the due respect, the standing ovation it deserves from the leaders of their country.
“There is no place like home”- English proverb; that being said, I do not believe that any level headed human being would leave his home country, leave everything and everyone he has known- his family and friends, to go and live in another country, if it were not for his socioeconomic benefits. In foreign countries, immigrant men and women literally find their lives in a state tantamount to that of a fugitive mainly because of their illegal alien statuses and so, they are given to chose between having to always run from the law in that foreign country by holding on to their country’s passport or having to go through the legal process of naturalization, which calls for relinquishing the passports of their country of birth and taking on the passports of the foreign country. The logical thing for them usually consists in giving up their country’s passport.
If the legislative body of our country can be honest enough, they will inevitably come to terms with an undeniable fact that the Zambian citizens who seek dual citizenship have no other motive but to feel at home in both their home country and the foreign country in which they have chosen to live- and only with one view- bettering their lives and that of their families. The argument that seems to be the cornerstone of our government’s reasoning behind their delay in the passing of this law, is that the ‘would-be holders of Dual citizenship’ statuses might create a security glitch in our country once that law is passed. This argument does not hold any water. I personally, refuse to believe there is any type of authenticity in the insinuations of our legislatures regarding their reason for not enshrining this long-overdue constitutional clause in the laws of our nation.
Out of 15million people in Zambia only 350000 formally employed
Rev. Dr Martin Luther King Jr, once said, “To deny a man the opportunity of having a job, is in essence, saying to this man, that he has no right to exist”.
The Zambian government, through a perpetual pattern of irresponsible governance, regime after regime, have neglected to put in place the checks and balances that can assure the average Zambian of the opportunity to have basic employment. Therefore, our own government constantly says to at least 95% of the very citizens they govern everyday, that they do not have a right to exist.
Out of a pupation of 15 million people in our country, only 350,000 Zambians are in formal employment. Why should people be ridiculed for looking to other countries in order to survive and provide for their children? Do these law makers even have a clue of what is involved here or do they think this is a joke? Do they know that life in the western countries only supports people up to a certain age and after that, mostly due to the stresses of that life, eventually, the immigrant is left wanting to go back home? Why should any Zambian be made to pay millions just to renew their stay duration in their own country in old age, simply because they chose to help themselves?
My personal view is that it is criminal for the law makers of Zambia not to pass the Dual Citizenship law; it is unfair for them not to make it constitutional. There would be no direct progressive benefits to our country by punishing the well intending Zambians, who found themselves as victims of the situation, displaced from their own country and living abroad as economic refugees in search of Greener pastures.
A refusal to warrant this constitutional right to the Zambian citizens who demand for its infusion into the laws of our country is not only retrogressive to national development but also unpatriotic and a threat to the democratic freedoms that should be enjoyed by every Zambian both at home and abroad.
The Dual Citizenship laws must be passed in Zambia, not only because The UK, The USA, France, Germany, Italy etc, have these laws in their constitution, but just because it must be seen as a legal right of the concerned citizens of Zambia, especially the ones living abroad.
By H. Malimba USA