Thursday, June 13, 2024

Zambians born after independence, listen


File:Pupils from Lusaka schools follow proceedings during the junior achievers programme at Kabulonga Boys secondary school
File:Pupils from Lusaka schools follow proceedings during the junior achievers programme at Kabulonga Boys secondary school

I was about to press the “send” button for my latest article bearing the above title when my son Dalitso called to inform me of the president’s passing. I may have been the president’s harshest critic, but my heart is burdened with sorrow. It is with profound sadness that I join the people of my beloved country Zambia in mourning the death of President Michael Chilufya Sata MHSRP.

Please don’t stop here. Keep reading. This article addresses, in particular, those born after independence. You are on your own now. Those who made independence possible are on their way out. They may have faltered, but they have made it possible for you to have a country of your own; one with abundant wealth.

It’s up to you

With the passing of president Sata, you face an uncertain future, a future that will test you in ways that you cannot fathom. You are alone in an ever-changing world, one for which you will need to expend all your effort, energy, and intellect for survival; indeed, one for which you will have to make the right decisions. As you search for a leader the next 90 days, bear in mind you have learned enough from presidents Kaunda, Chiluba, Mwanawasa, Banda, and Sata. Their wisdom and that of their peers has come to pass. It is orthodox and antediluvian. You will emulate them at your own peril.

Stop here. Take a moment to look through your window of life. Do you see how you are surrounded by the worst killers on earth? Some are knocking at your door—Ebola, AIDS, Cholera, Malaria, Meningitis, TB, cancer, poverty, corruption, disunity, illiteracy, ignorance, exploitation, oppression, and racism. A good number of these calamities have already found their way inside. Some have just claimed the president’s life three years in his reign.

Just imagine, while life expectancy of developed countries is soaring above 80 years, yours is hobbling between 30 and 40 years. If you don’t do anything about it, it will soon go down to 20 and 0. To think some of you and your children will not live beyond fifty should worry you indeed.

I know I am writing to a people that hate to face realities and have a problem to accept the painful truth. But I dare say if for the next fifty years you do not pluck out the courage to face realities and in your usual inertia inclination continue to make wrong decisions, you will be wiped out from the face of the planet. It is no joke when scientists say it is during this period that you shall face extinction. Look it up on the Internet.

What is your purpose

As you reflect on the life of President Michael Sata, use the occasion to take your own personal inventory. Ask yourself bold questions like: “What is the purpose of my being on earth?” “What can I do to save my countrymen?” “How much am I worth on this planet?” Also, add supplementary questions like “Why me, why am I portrayed to be at the bottom of humanity?” “Why do I have to work so hard to impress others?” “Why do foreigners take advantage of me?” Why am I so dependent on others?” “What am I doing wrong?” And then ask yourself this question: “Am I cursed?”

Of course you are not cursed! Contrary to what colonialists told your parents and grandparents, you, black-skinned, flat-nosed, with woolly hair reading this article are not cursed. You are loved by God. You are equal to all. Always remember, it is not God who divided the human species into races and selfishly created different traits, abilities, qualities, morality, and other cultural behavioral characteristics, it is a fellow human. It is him who portrayed your parents as natural inferiors and subjected them to racial prejudice. It is him who denied them a better education because he was afraid they might exceed his expectations.

In the past fifty years you have seen what lack of education has done to some of our leaders. Not even populists could fill the gap created by moderate or poor academic credentials. It is this handicap that has made it difficult to drive modernization and democratization to its logical extreme.

Come and rescue Zambia

Fortunately, Zambia now has a good crop of young and energetic academics, thinkers, and graduates from the University of Zambia and other institutions of higher learning at home and abroad. There is an urgent need for you the learned to come to the rescue of the Zambian people. You need to appoint yourself an AGENT OF CHANGE, increase your political awareness and take control of how and who should govern the country. Do not leave this beautiful country to party cadres and manipulators, never!

Here is my advice. As an Agent of Change you first must tackle the most important question of your inventory: “Why me, why am I portrayed to be at the bottom of humanity?” The reason is because you are mentally indoctrinated. Even with your academic achievement, you see yourself as a person with the lowest intelligence on earth. It is this that has created low-esteem in you. It is this that has caused you to lose your scholastic motivation. It is this that has resulted in your lack of invention and innovation. Had you acquired self-confidence of the highest order, you would have found a cure for the president’s illness, and treated him in your environs.

Your lack of motivation has subjected you to economic stratification, social segregation, and exploitation. Yet you can’t do anything about it because you have surrendered your self-worth and lost your sense of survival. You have absolutely nothing of your own on which you can depend. In the next fifty years, you the Agent of Change must become strong-willed, most intelligent, audacious, cunning, and remove all cultural and traditional barriers.

You, the Agent of Change, must discard the present Zambian culture of dependency and replace it with the culture of self-reliance. You must replace old leaders with new young ones. With immediate effect you must cleverly and intellectually identify and expose psychological manipulative campaigns aimed at leaving you controlled and dominated by foreigners. Self-empowerment is the only way you will build your self-worth.

You do not have much time. You, the Agent of Change, need to start NOW to create a theory of development as experienced by the West and the Chinese—one of technological achievement and capital buildup. This will require rapid behavioral transformation. First, shade off the rotten attitude of failure; of “it’s too difficult I can’t do it.” Here is a quote by Yamamoto Tsunetomo to help you: “Nothing is impossible in this world. Firm determination, it is said, can move heaven and earth. Things appear far beyond one’s power, because one cannot set his heart on any arduous project due to want of strong will.”

Second, you possess the most important drive of your existence—survival instinct. You have not used it the past fifty years because foreigners have done everything for you. This has affected how you think, how you make decisions, how you apply your time and energy, what emotions you experience, and the way you interact with others. These experiences have reduced your pressing need for survival. You simply cannot survive without help from others. When faced with a challenge, you apply your usual “flight” reaction and take off.

As the nation prepares to give President Sata a sendoff, you should lock horns with the future. You should pluck enough courage and change your reaction to that of “fight.” Declare war on every situation you perceive as a threat to your existence. You can only do that by choosing the right leaders. Most of all, you should take keen interest in studying innovators and inventors around the world and copying their ideas. Strip the radio, computer, cellphone, plasma television, car, and try to make your own.

Pause here. Take a deep breath. Are you mentally strong for the fateful future? Are you ready for the fight of your life? Are you ready to fight the dependency syndrome? Are you able to change your attitude and think in depth and with foresight? Are you prepared to put your brilliant mind to good use? Do you refuse to be cowed or intimidated? Are you, as an Agent of Change, prepared to lead the Zambian people to a long-term destiny? Look at your motherland in the face and say “Yes I am!”

By Field Ruwe

Field Ruwe is a US-based Zambian media practitioner, historian, author, and a doctoral candidate. Learn more about him on his website On it you shall access his autobiography, articles, and books. Contact him, blog, or join in the debate. ©Ruwe2012.


  1. But Mr. Ruwe, do you really think you can contribute positively to the development of your motherland by permanently remaining tucked away in the diaspora? Zambia needs you sir, if you can, but if you can’t, please forever leave us alone in peace. Rubble rousing from a distant terrace is really of no use to us that are home. Truth be told…

    • I read the article on ZWD this morning when coming to work and I have to admit it was a good read.

      I am not a fan of Field never have been but I must admit I was impressed , keep up the good work

      I remain mourning


    • Ba UPND, let us now see if u are men enough to take over power. You wished Sata dead on many occasions and the man is now gone as per your wishes. Should u fail to win this time around, your party will be completely erased. Your HH must very nervous by now becoz even if u all wished Sata dead, the death has become as a surprise to you and u don’t even know where to start from? The man (Sata) has laid a solid foundation for his predecessor to win the next election easily. You where being warned that do wish any one dead, you never listened, now let us see what u can do. Mind u PF is solid, no matter what Meembe does, it will not work out. He tried to install Magande after Levy died but failed even now he will fail esp the PF has a seating SG with total support from his party.Wawa

    • Well Written Ruwe: young Zambians, let us reflect and take this advice seriously. We do not appoint ourselves as Change Agents??? Zambia will not move forward. Days are long Gone of saying Politics is a dirty game. It’s time we got dirty and get clean later as a Nation.

      Let us not leave the responsibility of moving our country forward to the so called recycled Politicians. We need New Blood and that blood is we the young Zambians born after Independence. We need younger vibrant leadership that will touch the needs of all Zambians. So let’s reflect and select a true young Zambian as the next head of state. Old Papas please retire because it’s our time and we are coming.
      My condolences to the Sata family and all Zambians. M.Y.S.R.I.P President Sata , Be assured that the Young will now…

    • @ Jude, ha ha! funny. You sound like the kind of Zambian someone was talking about in an article I read recently. It was titled “Zambians born after independence, listen” by a fella named Field Ruwe 🙂

  2. God has already chosen a President for Zambia, there is a David -Shepherd Boy somewhere in the waiting. Let’s pray that God gives us the appointed man/woman for this moment.

    • Does God choose leaders or is it the people. He has given us free will. True he has ordained authority and not officer bearers?

    • Ruwe, don’t worry. Zambia will be just fine. We are coming to take over power soon, and do away with the “ancient” way of governing the country, as shown to us by our dinosaurs.

  3. Yes, the future starts here – even as much as we want to have the old guard lead they are now chronologically and inevitably tired. They need their deserved rest and worthy position as nature designed. These exits we are witnessing are a season for change and a reason for new players who will now enact Scene II of the Zambian story. All the best fellow Zedians, as you take the mantle finally and continue this relay that was ably started by those like our now departed President.

  4. Ati “my heart is burdened with sorrow” hmmm. Strange judging from the contents of many of your previous posts Mr Ruwe. Yours is the easiest job sir i.e commenting from the terraces.

  5. What is your suggestion? Can you provide positive solutions intead of getting worried about mother Zambia while you pretend to be a genius.No one is perfect and no one will make the all Zambian happy.Even in developed countries not all people are happy.You may have you preffered politicians but remember this is the earthly kingdom. We will only be happy when Jesus comes to reign.

  6. Are you the same Ruwe from Chikola Secondary School. If so do you remember how the Head Teacher Mr. Wilkinson caught red handed drinking Chibuku at the nearby Tavern?

    • How petty can one get? We all have brushes with authority/authorities in our lives consciously or not. I urinated in my pants at primary school in class but now am respected senior office bearer. Please grow up Ndaje!!

  7. The constitution says the presidential candidate must live in Zambia for atleast 20yrs.Those in the diaspora have disqualified themselves and they will keep on rubble rousing from afar.Diasporans pliz come back and sort out the challenges facing your homeland.

  8. Kabimaba and Mmembe should stay away.We don’t want them.Please listern before u bring chaos cartel.Scott should listen otherwise he’ll be the 1st president to shed more blood in Zambia.People don’t want Kabimba and Mmembe cartel to control our country.If Scott appoints kabimba then HH wins.PF members will never vote 4 kabimba coz of arrongance

  9. No harm was meant. When you write your biography you don’t leave out those exciting moments and am sure the person directed will not take offence. You are not Field and you don’t how I interacted with him so don’t get involved. Am sad that you Zambians are always devoid of humour.

  10. President Sata Fought the fights worth fighting and the Lord has called him. Its upto the remaining people to take up where he left. Those who happen to know and worked with him, recall him as humble, selfless, hard working driven and a passion hero of the poor, marginalised and the voiceless. More importantly open minded and would light the house with his jokes.
    At this difficult and testing time to the family and the nation may the Lord almighty offer his everlasting love, care and guidance as we mourn our beloved president.
    Ruwe for the first time you have written an article full of ideas,encouragement and balanced too.
    Pafwa bantu Bamicheal rest in peace

  11. NEBO AT 6.1
    No harm was meant. When you write your biography you don’t leave out those exciting moments and am sure the person directed will not take offence. You are not Field and you don’t how I interacted with him so don’t get involved. Am sad that you Zambians are always devoid of humour

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