Tribalism and the Tonga People, A Curse or a Natural Phenomenon?

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Voters waiting to cast their votes at Kalingalinga Middle Basic School, Lusaka
Voters waiting to cast their votes at Kalingalinga Middle Basic School, Lusaka

What does the future hold for our democracy?

By Toshiki Kucheba

11th August 2016, Zambians were exercising a democratic right enshrined in our constitution, the right for the led to choose who should lead. The hallmark of any democracy is the free will an individual possess in selecting that said leader.

Unfortunately, the ripple effects of a strongly contested election between PF’s ECL and UPND’s HH left a dark cloud hovering over Zambia, the 2016 presidential elections left in their wake a deeply divided country, not on political or economic grounds but on a facet that has plagued African countries all over, Tribe. Voting patterns revealed a correlation between the party leader and the prevailing tribe in that constituency, was this Tribalism at work?

Let’s get rid of the science stuff first.

Psychology and its cousins, Anthropology and Sociology provide a scientific perspective to the debate, a phenomenon known along University halls as The Familiarity Effect or in the cut throat business of advertising, the Mere Exposure Effect. In a nutshell, the Familiarity Effect is a mental shortcut our minds make use of when evaluating arguments, Humans tend to accept persuasions or arguments from an individual they feel is similar in background, beliefs, tribe or economic conditions to them.

What’s science if it can’t be practical? 2008 USA Presidential Elections that ushered in the first black president had a statistical increase in young black voters and minority groups like Hispanics and Asians also reported a sharp increase in voters, this was coupled by a drop in voters with white and non-Hispanic origin.

Humans beings are social beings and since time immemorial have been separating each other along different lines, ethnicity, race, nationality etc. members of any of these groupings have been known to subjectively provide loyalty and support to members of their group as is believed that an advancement of one member is of benefit to the whole. Leaders particularly make use of this shortcut, they board buses and appear at filling stations with empty containers during a fuel shortage to attract the common man as did Sata, they conspicuously appear on the front page of print media reading a bible or invite ZNBC to church as does ECL to attract the Christian community and some even feebly spell it out like Daniel Munkombwe, all this is done in an effort to garner loyalty from people who will view them as one of their own.

The “buy Zambian”, “local is laka” or the more malign “wako ni wako” slogan is the familiarity principle at work, on a whimsical note, we see this loyalty in football games where supporters of the Zambian National team are predictably Zambian, even when the odds are stacked against our Sunzu we paint our faces in green, black, orange and red while letting our eagle soar to prove our loyalty to our boys. When it manifests in loyalty to a country, we call it Patriotism, loyalty to one’s family, we term them as family values, when it manifests as loyalty to a tribe, we call it Tribalism.

Democracy is a system of political organisation whose underlying principle is the right accorded to the led in choosing who should lead. The world has become a complex system whose facets include Economics, Law, Politics, Health, Technology, Finance, International Treaties etc. and whoever wishes to lead must either be fully conversant with the aforementioned or have under his belt a qualified team that does.

In a good democracy, the led must be literate enough or have at least a rudiment understanding of the above coalesced with an unbiased media supported by intellectual input from universities and think tanks so as to effectively scrutinise political parties that wish to lead. That joylessly is not the case with mother Zambia, illiteracy levels in Zambia stand at an alarming 70.6%, 25th in Africa and 142nd in the world (as of 2013). People in our country are unable to read or write, I doubt the average cadre dressed in political regalia could understand let alone read the words written on their T-Shirt or Chitenge.

The majority of Zambians are illiterate; it is impossible to expect them to understand party manifestos or fully appreciate Government policy, this curse is exacerbated by a poor reading culture among the literate, half of college students up to now still don’t know what they voted Yes to and these are people that can read, write and understand complex mathematics like the Fourier series.

Illiteracy levels in Zambia are so bad that when the Government calls for a referendum to vote in basic human rights, they have to be parental and tell the people how to vote, so bad that the number of rejected votes outnumber the votes of most political parties.

So what happens when you take a political system that depends on information seeking and understanding literate individuals and place it in a society where the majority lack those basic skills? You have a political dispensation no different from Zambia’s that lacks objectivity but thrives on subjectivity, lacks impartiality but full of ipse dixit, favours political handouts and stunts intelligent but economically humble individuals and a seemingly divisive cancer, where electorates no longer see a candidate for his ability, skills and intellect but for evidently non-essential traits such as tribe, faith and history, the familiarity principle kicks in.

1991 was the year Zambia laid to rest the one-party rule and in a move to oust the sitting President at the time KK, Zambia rallied behind a short, charismatic and tough man, Fredrick Chiluba. At the time Zambians were not largely concerned with tribe and in the who’s who of Zambian politics but they all shared one common goal, a change of leadership. Titus ruled the country for 10 years under a constitution that allowed two 5-year terms, but after tasting the sweet nectar of Presidency, Titus couldn’t resist the urge that swallowed his predecessor and bid for a third term but after facing tough resistance from within and outside the MMD, he handpicked a successor, a former politician at the time and a Ndola lawyer born in Mufrila, Levy Mwanawasa.

This defiance of the MMD’s constitution angered a lot of vying candidates within the party, this junction in time led to the birth of PF. Zambia arguably held its first veritable multiparty elections in 2001, the candidates were as follows; Levy Mwanawasa MMD, Anderson Mazoka UPND, Tilyenji Kaunda UNIP, Tembo Christon FDD, Miyanda Godfrey HP, Mwila Benjamin ZRP, Nevers Mumba NCC, Konie Gwendoline SDP, Shamapande Yobert NLD, Inonge Lewanika AZ and Michael Sata PF. Top contenders were Mwanawasa, a Lenje, Anderson Mazoka, a Tonga, Tembo Christon and Tilyenji Kaunda of the Nsenga or Nyanja and Mwila seemingly, a Bemba. The results were as follows:

2001 Elections
2001 Elections

As seen in the above results from 2001 each candidate dominated in provinces where he was seen as familiar, Mazoka dominated in Southern, North-Western and Western and Lusaka, Tembo and Kaunda who were doing badly in other provinces somehow dominated Eastern province, Mwila a shoe in for last place somehow got 15% of the votes in Luapula province and Mwanawasa without a surprise took Northern, Luapula and Copperbelt, the election was won by MMD’s Mwanawasa after managing to secure 28.69% of the votes with UPND’s Mazoka coming in a close second with 26.76%. The legality of the elections was however questioned by both international and local observers citing rigging as the driving force behind MMD’s victory.

2006, Zambia again went to the polls, UPND had a new leader HH after the death of Mazoka and contested the election under a political pact constituting UPND, FDD and UNIP forming the UDA. The provincial voting patterns didn’t show any major disparity from the 2001 elections. After the death of Levy Mwanawasa, Zambia held its first by-election contested primarily by V Pres. Banda of MMD an Easterner, HH of the UPND a Tonga, Michael Sata, a Bisa of PF and Miyanda of UNIP.

Rupiah Banda dominated Central, Western and decimated his opponents in Eastern Province, not a single constituency was won by any opposition leader e.g. Sinda Constituency in Katete District of the Eastern Province awarded RB 10,271 votes while PF’s Sata came in second with 753 ballots. Michael Sata dominated Copperbelt and decimated his opponents in Luapula, every constituency was won by the PF. Hakainde decimated his opponents in Southern Province with the exception of Livingstone e.g. Dundumwezi Constituency in Kalomo District, HH outrivalled with 9,036 votes followed by Rupiah with 584 votes, needless to say, Sata had 57. Lusaka and Northern was a co-dominance with the MMD in favour of PF. North-Western was co-dominated by Rupiah Banda and Hakainde Hichilema in favour of RB.

2011 was the year that young party founded by that disillusioned former MMD presidential hopeful who only managed to rake in 3.35% of national votes in 2001 finally ascended to power, talk about “started from the bottom now we here”, pop cultural references aside, let’s examine the voting patterns once again, this time ignoring the ‘I also ran for President’ candidates.

2011 Elections
2011 Elections

Tribalism at play? Of course, the familiarity principle strikes again. Each candidate got at least 70% in their provinces of origin or where their tribesmen are dominant, the candidate who seems to be on the opposite end of the spectrum is one whose tribe seemed to be a classical ethnic competitor. One striking fact about the voting pattern since 2001 is the discrepancy associated with Copperbelt and Lusaka, this can be attributed to the fact that in Urban Industrialised areas exists a diverse, educated (however variant) and informed population, not only that but there exists a prevalence of inter-marriages and tribes co-exist peacefully.

The voting pattern is reflective of many angles that include Tribe, Policies, Personality, History, Political Rhetoric and Demographic Blueprint and this in turn produces a ballot that cannot exactly be pin-pointed as being tribal. The further we move away from industrialised districts, we encounter rural areas where the majority are illiterate, base most of their knowledge on tradition, lack proper information flow and to an extent are governed by tradition leaders like Chiefs who are still trying to hold on to an outdated culture that influences a tribal voting pattern in their subjects. 2015 and 2016 election results are of little variation to the Zambian norm of tribal voting. But why are the Tonga people singled out and called names for a voting pattern that is clearly country wide and only natural in such a jejune democracy?

2016 Presidential elections were too victims of this tribal voting pattern but all hell rained down on the Tonga people, subjected to insults, laughs and pure hate. Granted of course the votes were polarised to a greater reach in southern province as compared to other provinces and previous years, but that could not be the only reason. It all boils down to Politics, Davies Chama, General secretary of Patriotic Front at one point blatantly insulted the Tonga people, Mumbi Phiri also of the PF called the Tonga people names, Chishimba Kambwili of course cannot go without mention on a list of politicians who insult, Jesus would lose if he stood against HH in southern province, he said, it had to take the mother of the nation V Pres. Inonge Wina to apologise for the sentiments of her party members in parliament, Chiefs too were outraged.

Indulge me as we go down this path of logic, 1. Imagine you are a politician in a third world country 2. Voting patterns are based on Personality and not on ideas 3. You insult a group of people based on their preferred candidate 4. You antagonise that group even further by calling their candidates’ names and insinuating they will never rule 5. Being in a position of authority your sentiments about that group spread into an uneducated society 6. That group you just insulted chooses to give your Party little to no votes 7. You turn around and call that group Tribal.

Do you the reader see any logic in this? Let’s not be a country that falls prey to cheap political theatrics which in turn spread hate and further divide our country. Not until we have an educated nation that understands and lends an ear to policies and developmental plans, we will have to deal with Politicians who run around on stage claiming it’s our Tribe’s turn to rule, Politicians who avoid crucial political debates that afford them a chance to defend their policies but still win an election, Political campaigns not characterized by excessive alcohol consumption, music concerts, kickbacks and footballers kicking a ball on stage.

I pray for the day our national politics will be characterized by town hall meeting, political debates, clear manifestos and intellectuals at the helm of power, yes we will every now and then trip and fall over the familiarity principle but at least then it will be with candidates that have presented a clear vision for this country, candidates that do not seek to divide this nation for their own personal benefit and a nation that will rally behind leaders not for their tribe, gender, race, past drinking habits, economic stature or their ability as a “buyers” but by their dedication to the people and their delivery, a time where it is the norm for a Government to be unseated after 5 years if it has failed to deliver, a time when development with be equally distributed around the nation despite voting patterns, a time when democracy will be of ideas and not personalities.

But until our literacy levels fly as high as the eagle on our flag, I urge all our citizens to stand together as one and move this nation forward. We are still lacking in so much as a nation and this should not be the time we judge our neighbours on tribe but by the content of their mind and soul. Nelson Mandela once said that people are born not hating anyone based on superficial qualities like tribe but learn that from the environment they are born into, if they can be taught to hate, they can be taught to love. Let’s be a nation of lovers.

163 COMMENTS

  1. I feel pity for the tonga people because due to upnds fight for justice and development the tongas have taken on all the negative implications for supporting a progressive party. Our tonga brothers we thank you for you integrity.

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    • Kenya’s 2007-08 post-election violence revealed the extent to which tribal forces could quickly bring a country to the brink of civil war.

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    • This article is at once dangerous and divisive even though it calls for national unity.

      It is aimed at portraying the Tonga peoples as tribal when in fact all tribes are my nature very inclined to vote for someone from their own background.

      Even amongst the so called educated people, this bias towards the familiar can not be totally erased.

      In short, this article is UTTER RUBBISH and does not tell us anything that we do not all ready know.

      NEXT !!!!!!!!

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    • Tribes issue is one of traditional is holding Africans back, it’s time to begin to think more about black people and Africanism then thinking about tribes that it’s creating division among Africans. It’s time to push for democracy, human rights, good education system based in African values and the basic conditions of living, no more famine or civil wars in Africa . The true is most of African population are living below poverty line and the politicians and their family members are living in palaces as the kings of tribes. We’re in 21th century and there are some children are still studying under trees in place like Zambia so called one of most advance democracy in Africa. But the children of politicians are studying in private schools in Western countries. Something must be wrong…

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    • Good article but sorry as you have put it not one in Zambia will read this, Poor reading culture.

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    • @snakebite it’s too long and winding in its attempts to hide tribalism in euphemisms of familiarity. Why tribalism can’t be clothed in modern intellectual slang is that it is primitive, retrogressive incongruent with modernity and we can all see its results: Rwanda, Kenya, Biafra and now South Sudan

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    • Badala, Pepe Tangaism crushed on 11th August, 2016 and a 5 months mourning is going on in the heart of every hardcore tonga tribalist. Out-rightly Zambians have rejected and killed it.

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    • THE COUNTRY HAS ENTERED A SECOND DAY WITHOUT A PRESIDENT. BY UNCONSTITUTIONALLY CLINGING TO POWER, LUNGU IS COMMITTING TREASON. I AM APPEALING TO THE CHIEF JUSTICE AND HER DEPUTY, THE ATTORNEY GENERAL AND THE TWO CHURCH MOTHER BODIES, TO PREVAIL ON LUNGU TO RESPECT THE CONSTITUTION HE HIMSELF SIGNED. HIS CONTINUED STAY IN OFFICE IS UNCONSTITUTIONAL.

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    • @Afrocandy. While I agree that tribalism is bad, I do not agree that you can compare Kenya’s tribalism with Zambia. In Kenya, there are even very few intermarriages between tribes. In Kenya, a person is defined by tribe, like ‘a Kalenjini man’ or ‘a Luo man’ etc. This never happens in a natural conversation in Zambia. We are better.

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    • What if the Tongas vote for the right candidate all the time? They voted for FTJ. When Mwanawasa died, the Bemba vote went to Sata. Bemba vote brought in PF, they sided with Lungu to keep “there Party” in power.

      #tongavotesmatter
      #VOTEHH2021 if he stands or still in politics… lol

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    • Nice attempt, but too biased toward making tongas saints while demonizing the other tribes in a subliminal way. You failed to balance it. I can give you a C if i was marking your paper.

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    • I don’t mind with tribalism. I only get bothered when lozis regroup that they want to leave Zambia and form their undemocratic kingless-dom. Zambia without
      Ndobo
      Mmembe
      Inonge
      Lubinda
      What kind of Zambia will that be?

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    • This is a first article I have ever read that captures real analysis, insights and facts. According to the above statistics since 2001 to 2011, Tongas were the least tribal in the voting patterns. Both PF and MMD got more votes, by percentage, in Southern Province compared to what a Tonga candidate got in Bemba and Nyanja land. No further comments.

      As for my Tonga brothers and sister, time for giving in and for sucking up is over. This time around, we are not letting go. Let them call us names for all we care. Remember, my dad was Lamba who married a Tonga woman. My family ties are stronger on the Tonga side and this is what I say to my people; time for compromise is done. People have insulted us and never bothered to apologize.

      This time around, its game on. The 2016 elections…

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    • contd..
      The 2016 elections reflect just that, that Tongas (Ilas, Lenjes, Solis, Salas, etc), Lozis, Luvales, Lundas and other looked down upon tribes have united themselves. Say what you want but tribalism stated from the Northern Block.

      We supported Chiluba, Sata, RB, etc. For as long as the other tribes support either a Northerner or Easterner, its One Zambia One nation. When Tonga support their own, its tribalism. If you think Im exaggerating, let Mama Inonge Wina take over PF and see what will happen to her. She will be treated exactly like what they did to Kabimba. I aint even trippin’, that’s the truth. HH throughout his campaigns never used tribal talk but he stuck on his 10 points plan. PF did the opposite, tribal throughout. Anyway, back to work…

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    • Truth be told PF and UPND are benefiting from regional alignment, but what is hating is the level of insults which have come from Kambwili, Mumbi and the rest of the team. This level of insulting with impunity has now touched the ordinarily people of the land. A bad seed have been planted under the watch of PF. Therefore, it should take PF to rectify this abnormality, witness the so call peaceful demonstration by PF cadres in Lusaka and listen to the insults they hail at a named tribe. Such happenings are with full blessing of the Party CEO, Secretary General. It is only when people can demonstrate based on issues and not insults will everyone be at peace. Davis Mwila you have a role to play in real times to unit this country. Ruling is only nice when the ruled are happy and not when…

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    • @NEZ, when were you born for you to say “tribe only became a negative issue after 2011”? Are you saying this because some politicians came to prominence riding on the back of this monster and people didn’t vigorously voice their disgust until maybe in the 2011 elections, and there after? It is this kind of SELECTIVE AMNESIA that will keep alive this evil for generations to come.

      Yes, because to you you don’t see anything wrong with TRIBAL SHENANIGANS within UPND, way before 2011, that brought HH onto the Zambian political scene. Yes, to you everything started when Sata was elected President—and the insinuations in your comment are very clear.

      Even the author tries so hard to skate around the ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM when it comes to why many Zambians feel the way they feel about…

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    • Continue…

      …UPND and it’s relationship with the Tonga people. This is not something people simply dreamed up, it was actually said and endorsed by UPND leadership itself.

      But not until we start acknowledging some of these WRONGS are going to make any progress on this front!

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    • Bane everyone is easily drawn to their own but the challenge people complain about with Tongas is whilst other tribes can show tribal inclination when voting and end there our Tonga friends take it further in recruitment and promotions in both work places and learning institution. Every election Tongas start passing CVs in preparation to take over especially institutions like Zesco, Zamtel, RATSA, RDA and other GRZ agencies. It doesn’t matter how competent or qualified the people holding senior positions are. My was denied enrolment at Evlyn Hone College on the platform of tribalism. Though she was infront of Tonga girl the Tonga woman picking students told her that she will pick the next girl because only one place was remaining and she can’t leave her own.

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    • Really?? was it just after 2011 and did it come in when Tongas thought Miyanda was one of them but ditched him when they realised he was actually from the Eastern Province?

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    • Tribes are a contradiction in todays Africa they are an evil if your tribe is not in power and a benefit if your tribe is in power. This is due to the nature of our political and government systems,…

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    • Lets just divide the country, every tribe try on there own. Europe is peaceful because no country has 72 tribes and dialects to deal with. Its a recipe for disaster to try and squeeze 72 tribes into one country….lol

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  2. Iam a proud Tonga well educated and has been raised in Eastern province,Lsk and Northern province.I can speak many languages in zambia.I would like to say enough is enough with the insults coming from the Bemba people.I have been victimised by Bembas at work despite my qualifications.I have survived poison atempts on my life while working in Kasama from Bemba people who could not compete with me using brains.In short we have nothing in common with Bembas.They are hiding behind Lungu using him like a condom.Easterners are not tribalists.In zambia we have only one try tribe that thinks its superior thats why God has made the poor were they come from.lets divide Zambia so that we see who will develop faster.These thieves and lazy Bembas are taking the congo route enough is enough.We want our…

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    • “We were all humans until tribe disconnected us, religion separated us, politics divided us and wealth classified us.”

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    • @Zambezi Republic. I am glad that you’re a proud Tonga but I can also see that education has not civilised you or removed your inferiority complex. How do Bembas become your enemy in this? If you have lived in Bemba land, you will have noticed that Bembas are just like your people, decent people on the whole. How do you make claims without evidence? HH did much better in Bemba areas than ECL did in Bantu Botatwe areas. Development in your land has not happened mostly because of your lack of vision and being stuck in the past. Get properly educated!

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    • If you were educated you wouldn’t spew the waste you have just posted above. Calling a tribe thieves and lazy **** cannot be an argument of a mind which is well educated and understands that in every community there are thieves, lazy people and socio-paths just like you Zambezi Republic.
      Get a life you disgruntled chap. You are full of hate such that reasoning with you would be sheer waste of time.

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    • Hahahaha! Do you really think the current inhabitant of State House will bother to read it?

      No man, that will cut into his Jamesoni drinking time!

      If he could not even read the Constitution that he himself signed and is now biting his AASSS I think it will never happen. As the author says –

      “The majority of Zambians are illiterate; it is impossible to expect them to understand party manifestos or fully appreciate Government policy, this curse is exacerbated by a poor reading culture among the literate…”

      As they say, a fish rots from the head!

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  3. I kind of agree but Zambia is divided to the core, very true. Remember the insults that have been thrown at the Lozis (over Barotseland issue) the Tongas, not only during the campaigns but even before and the government looked the other way. Those that have insulted were left to do so at will, do you really think people cannot react. These are the results unfortunately, that have continued to date, this is a reaction of a group of people who feel insulted. Despite Bo Inonge Wina being VP (Kaingu even reminded them of this), Nalolo rejected PF? What does that mean, can they hate their own, or their own has opted to close her eyes to the injustices to her own people. There is no turning back, despite the reconciliatory tone being used now by those who said and did wrong things. UPND, is no…

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    • In Kenya, if you introduce yourself as Rose, it is not uncommon to find people asking ‘Rose who?’ If you decline to answer then the question becomes ‘Rose from where?’. Tribalism makes people judge you by the language you speak rather than by your personality. The absurdity of it all makes you wonder when the hell you made an application to God personally, requesting to be born into a particular tribe.

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  4. UPND, is no longer a just political party, but has become a voice (movement)…through which people (from Southern, Western, North Western, etc) have to speak. You call it a tribal party (your opinion), but it is not! Check the statistics if you know what that it is! Watch the space! If the judgment on the petition goes the against PF, of course may be unexpected, it will be a wake up call to all.

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  5. MMD and PF killed agriculture ,thus killed the livelyhood of the Tongas speaking people.The Bembas thought they were purnishing us,alas tosay they opened our eyes to politics in order to survive.UPND will never die and the voting pattern will be the same for ever.The Lozis,Kaondes,Lundas,Luvales,Kachokwes,Mbundas,Nkoyas,Nyengos,Ilas,Saalas,Toka leya,Tongas,Lenjes,Solis and Lambas voted in protest to the selfish Bemba Corupt Government . This a clear message to Lungu that we want a fair share in Job position starting from Cabinet to list civil servant.A fair distribution of wealth not segregation.In short we want our country back(North western Rhodesia of 1911)

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  6. This is a wonderful article and KUDOS to Lusaka Times. You have always been professional but of late tried to be bought by PF please change and don’t be used.
    ECL got 37,000 and HH 890 in some places in Eastern did they make noise. PF Leaders called people of Western, Southern and Western as Dogs, Surely did they expect to vote for them

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  7. Tribalsim has been institutionalised in zambia and has been taught to children of the Bemba and Nyanja people from birth.Why do these people make sure their children speak only their langauge .The answer is simple1.They are cowards who are so afraid that one day the lenjes and the Lambas will chase them from LSK and CB.They know they are economic refuges in a land of plenty(North western Rhodesia.)In order to dominate they have made sure that they have appointed there people in all strategic position including ECZ.The army has been recruiting only Bembas and nyanjas since 2011.Their aim is to make themselves so strong.Now that they know that they have power they are trying to rub it in our heads that we are minorities and inferior.This provocative act has brought about this protest vote…

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    • It’s time for Africans to have change of mindset, forget about division of tribes and focus more in united Africa, human rights and kick out useless politicians in power. There are individuals in Africa who are greedy; they only get into politic because they believe that the quickest way to get rich and not to defend interest of African people.

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    • @Lenje and Soli Warriors

      I also add the Luvale, Toka, Kalunda, Mbunda, Lozi, Chokwe, Tonga, Kaonde warriors.

      Please continue teaching our children the value of integrity, honesty, hard work, diligence. Let them stay away for the theft, corruption, greed, violence and lies of the tribes in north-east. We are different from them, lets not copy their ways. Lets convert them by marrying their children so that the off springs have our cultural values.

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    • First of all there are no Nyanja people. Nyanja is a lingua franca meaning its comprised of many languages like Swahili. Second you seem to possess an inferiority complex. Noone stops you from speaking your language. Just get people to understand you. Zambia has no vernacular language policy so its up to you to teach others

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  8. Fair article. I just don’t understand how PF can insult a group of people and expect them to remain happy and even vote for them! PF logic beats logic.

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  9. To Bembas and Nyanjas an election has always been a REFRENDUM ON BAROSTELAND ,hence they made sure they voted for their own since 1964.They dont care the quality of a president as long as he belongs to north eastern Rhodesia.There agenda is to hide behind political power to share our countries resources to themselves and there children only.We tried Mazoka who was a better candidate they denied him,Now its Hakainde a succesfull Businessman and Economist they are chosing a Komboni Drunkard Lawyer who was convicted of stealing a poor widows pension.Things have changed our children who are exposed through out Southern,Western,Nothwestrn,Lusaka,CB and central provinces after being dinied Jobs because of their tribe have voted in protest.

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  10. The author of this article is an idi.ot, mother fuc.ker!! Why equate Tribalism to Tongas? Bembas and Ngonis are the most tribalist tribes. In fact in 2011 Election, we all saw that the Easterners voted for Rupiah Banda and didn’t vote for PF at all – why didn’t you call that tribalism then? ID.IOTS!

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    • it’s only on social networks you see some small minded people exchange words about tribe and fight over silly things.

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    • If you read carefully, the author is saying the contrary. The whole country is tribal, simply put. Whilest the tonga’s on the receiving end of the criticism.

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    • This Chilyata, talk sense, stop insulting with impunity for your own gratification. Stop this nonsense. LT act in time, it people with no sensitivity like this person who destroy nations. He thinks some tribe/s are superior over the others. Let me point to Chiluba government, which did a lot of good in transforming our economic outlook at least in its architectural setup. Chiluba government destroyed the education system and now we are reaping from the expensive of uneducated literates. A phenomenon of just going through school and obtaining certificates with no ability to positively impact society. LT again act now as the resultant of some of these comments shall affect all people of this land.

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  11. Zambia is history especially if the con court will treat us like Kindergarten Kids by simply throwing out our petition.The movement of the people of North Western Rhodesia will be felt abroad and the world over.We need independence from the oppressive Bembas who have been insulting us and denying our children Jobs.They have reduced us to Begars in our own country.Buying all our potions of valuable land around Copperbelt,Lusaka and Solwezi.They want to reduce as to economic slaves while they swim in stolen luxury. They have corrupted all institutions of Governance.Now a thief have much honor that a hard working civil servant.Killings have become the order of the day.We are saying abash intimidation.Viva UPND the voice of the oppressed.

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  12. Very useless article! If where you come from is underdeveloped is it tribalism for one to vote change? The ***** that took time to even compose this essay is definitely elisioned and sick next time his sister is in labour he should ask the nurses or doctors what tribe they are cause am sure we also have Tonga doctors who according to this ***** will only save lives that are Tonga…

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  13. Poor leadership has contributed to the divisions we are facing now. Good leadership unifies a people across race, tribe and religion. As the writer has pointed out in our Country we’ve heard the very leaders tasked with uniting our people issue mocking statements targetting particular tribes. I recall Miles Sampa whilst a Minister under MCS issuing a mocking statement at one tribe. For instance the people of Western Province rallied their supporr behind MCS during the 2011 Elections hoping he would address their grievamces when he gets into power, alas once he was comfortably in State House he deployed soldiers to harrass villagers, directing them to shoot, “when you hear fa fire, when you hear fale fire” . Surely are these the words we expect from a leader of Country, isn’t that…

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  14. Without even reading the article itself, I can safely state that it is a curse, a BIG CURSE. The political history of Zambia and that region in.particular is there for all to see and read. The backwardness of present Zambia compared to other countries, can be traced to the politics of these chaps, they have blocjed anything progressive purely on tribal basis and nothing else. Just look at the recent voting pattern and the riots that followed where Mwales and Mulengas were targetted, need you say more?

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    • @Terriblenio:
      You are an idi.ot, irretrievably stu.pid and a mother fuc.ker! May the devil visit and keep you!!

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  15. All Zambians are tribalist we just pretend. Tongas are good people when did they become a problem? The truth is other Zambian tribes do not like tongas to lead them except them, it is tribalism at work. It is a shame really.

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  16. CCTV Africa

    Kenya’s Julius Yego makes history as first African to win a javelin medal in Olympic history
    Although the Kenyan world champion was wheeled from the field after an injury during his second throw costing him the gold medal, he still managed to secure the silver medal. German’s Rohler ended up surpassing him to win the Gold.
    Yego,27, nicknamed ‘YouTube man’ due to the unconventional manner that he learned the sport, won Kenya’s first Olympic medal outside of boxing and running.

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  17. Let me tell everyone something…………STOP THIS MADNESS OF QUESTIONING PEOPLE”S MOTIVES! OF COURSE EVERYONE LIKES SOMEONE SIMILAR TO THEMSELVES. Here in the USA the top question ALWAYS is “Who do you think represents/shares your values?”. Simply in the African context this can only mean culture which is indistinguishable from tribe. Simply, Tonga, Lozi and Luvale share values in common, while Bemba and Nyanja’s the same. There is nothing wrong with that. I am Tonga and proud! And if someone has a problem with my views this marriage of convenience which is Zambia, might as well come to an end. Lets see how the BEMBA and Nyanja will be if left to their own devices. I guarantee you that part (Northern half of Zambia) will turn into the cesspool not dissimilar to DR Congo. After,…

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    • Those are your mad wishes but who says you won’t become Zimbabwe or Mozambique if you break away?

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  18. Please check the UPND party constitution it says only a Tonga shall be the president. Munkombwe, VJ Mwanga and Maureen Mwanawasa are on record saying its now a term for a Tonga to be president.

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  19. RB similarly mistreated the people of Westen Province, the very Province that gave him the crucial top-up figure to give him the lead. He ordered police to shoot youngsters and old people, some youngsters remain missing todate. It had been the hope of many that with the shift to plural and democratic governance we would experience an enabling and modern environment, but seemingly our people were even more united during KK’s era. Tribalism, nepotism, favouratism, coruption became the major tools for one FTJ with his right handmen the likes of MCS as early as 1992. Today we are witnessing leaders in ruling party such as Father Bwalya threatening to deal with certain tribes who belong to regions where they got low votes. A true leader is supposed to be all embracing. As for RB he should do…

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    • Your land (Southern Province) is just a desert who would want to go there. Are you not the ones who are coming to our regions. You have no shame

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  20. Useless article centered on demonising Tongas,

    Its this type of biased reporting which will haunt this country.

    The bottom line is , Tribalism is all over zambia and across many nations. But here in Zambia, some tribe wants to paint themselves saints in name of other MANY docile tribes (Out of 73, more than 50 tribes have NO identity but hiding under Bemba Tribe).

    But Tongas cannot be fooled. If Zambia needs unity , lets unity in harmony . Name calling will NOT WORK.

    Else to HELL with your stupid agenda.

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    • What about all the tribes that have been grouped under Tonga e.g Goba, Toka Ila etc, they also don’t have their identity. Or all the tribes that have been grouped under Lozi, no they have no identity. Even those in Eastern Province like the Tumbukas who are under Nyanja, they too have no identity. You are so hateful due to yo inferiority complex

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  21. im not a bemba, tonga ,Nyanja, Kaonde nor lozi, the tongas are evil u cant be promoted if yo boss is a tonga, at work if u have 3tongas and supervisor is a tonga, then no peace. in monze they wiched a catholic bishop coz was not a tonga. if its not true argue over the catholic bishop who died with road accident

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  22. @22, dont tell lies. RB never ordered police to shoot any if your tribesmates. They were shot by police in their duty to protect the greater peace of Mongu during a very serious riot? Do you think that there was time to consult the President Banda whether to shoot or not? Or are you suggesting that the riots were pre planned by Mr Banda so that the police should shoot innocent citizens? The rioters whi were shot were about to set fire to a flling station holding massive amount of fuel. If they had succeeded there would have been 10 times more deaths from the inferno in the surrounding areas than those who were shot. It was question of preventing the greater evil, unfortunarely politicians twisted the whole thing in order to gain votes. That is the tragedy of our politics, cheating the…

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    • Firstly no where in my posting I have said I’m from Western Province. Secondly in leadership responsibility for any such adverse actions lies squarely with the one at the helm. Can you imagine how many people would lose their lives if the police didn’t require command/instructions from above to use live bullets. There are also many effective ways of containing riotus behaviour without necessarily firing live bullets. These are also the sentiments of the people of that region which also aired during the Roger Chongwe commission of inquiry.

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  23. We thought by undertaking massive developments to southern and western people will be made to vote based on development alas it was opposite.
    Upnd should field a different leader other than hh who came on the political scene sailing in a tribal card. This has completely changed the outlook of politics in Upnd because everyone knows their mission.
    Go for convention and elect a democratic leader and see if tribalism will not end. Pf had a similar problem during sata regime that’s why you saw the tubena Sampa and the like going the tribal way. My appeal to all Upnd sympathisers is CALL for a national convention where hh should not be allowed to contest for the presidency because he represents tribalism.
    I thank you and remember that the top 4 in pf are not bembas.

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  24. The author starts very well with comparisons in his analysis but suffice to say he fails to make a well balanced analysis at the end. Also the article is not very exhaustive because everyone can see towards the end he identify himself by defending one group and literally attacking PF campaign strategic belittling Kalwisha bwalya and other musicians. Here you became too personal thereby diverting from your intended go and misleading readers. I won’t delve on that because you know better why you decided to go that far. Nevertheless, you have strived to explain tribalism since multipartism and neglected to research on the same pre-multipartism. Unless you were born in the 80s you may realize that this problem started long before. I would that you give us your analysis in this era I have…

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  25. That is the tragedy of our politics, cheating the masses. You saw it in recent elections where a supposed intellectual an economics graduate by the name of HH even desperately entered an alliance with evil people like Mmembe just for the votes and not for the national good. The tribaluam of HH cannot be denied, even HH himself has declined to clarify or refute his election to UPND president as a tonga? And how can he when he actually reaffirmed it in 2015 when he physically embraced Munkombwe for saying exactly the same thing? HH is unguarded when he is overconfident of victory, he will support the tonga for prezident cry until he loses, then he will seek the bemba vote.

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  26. The main problem is Zambians you have allowed same old man to to divide you at your expense. I feel sorry for you people who live in Zambia. Lungu allowed minister to get paid illegally and you still want to trust him? Did he explain how he got the money within a short term in office? I main problem is that a lot of people are not educated therefore they are easily deceived. Look at Mumbi Phiri, man will do anything to make him self rich…..I am Bemba and yo be honest I don’t like the idea of looking at Tongas as tribalist. I think we are the problem. I don’t want Lungu or PF to rule Zambia if the rigged the election. The other issue is that the legal system is not fair…If it’s UPND member is caught the police and court are quick to act. But we have seen how they…

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  27. All theives and plunderers of public funds have been bembas.
    Even in major companies if you have bembas just know stealing is all they think of 24/7 just like Their brothers in Congo.
    Other tribes are do not want to be associated with these theives who think plundering public funds is being clever. They even congratulate them selves on plunder.

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    • The biggest plunderer Zambia has ever recorded is a Tonga named HH followed by a Tonga chief named Mkuni. So what are uou talking about?????

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  28. Interesting article whose motive is questionable. I find the emphasis on illiteracy not convincing as I am not sure I understand his definition of illiteracy. I do agree that our country is divided and currently very polarised. This, however, isn’t knew as history of Zambian politics can testify. Illiteracy might contributed significantly to the lack of understanding the long term consequences of the choices our people make, but it’ll not explain the basis for making the choices. When you read comments here, you see the psyche driving the choices, although the motivation might be very complex. My own view’s that tribalism is driven by poverty as well as ignorance. Politicians have exploited those factors. Our problem is we’re yet to have a gifted politician to inspire and heal the…

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    • True….globalisation is key to development if you tribal you will definitely be left behind 5 years behind…..think global think systemically and the power of indifferences in terms of race, region and tribal contribution towards better Zambia

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    • Sibweni be proud indeed but promoting tribal identity at a time such as this I personally think is not wise, leadership calls for sensitivity so unity plays its role

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  29. The tribe is a key ingredient of one s identity. Anyone that loses this identity loses part of their human worth. So tribe pride must be encouraged. its healthy.

    Politics should continue to rely on tribr to ensure that elected leaders contnue to mind the tribal factor. So voting according to tribe is still fine ans should be encouraged.

    Employing accordibg to tribe is also very fine. However br mindful that each tribr has its own baggage. So if you want priductivity employ a hardworking type tribe. Lozis do well in Nakambala sugarcanes and tumbukas are good domestic workers. Those qualities ar3 derived from tribal cultural settings and are good.

    Marrying by tribe is also very good and should be encouraged. However be mindful of key attributes of each of th3se groupings and…

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    • You are misled. Be practical and you will realise a persons DNA doesn’t carry tribe or national genes. These are artificial structures. The people who call themselves Americans are all foreigners who came from Europe and Africa with various national and tribal identities but they are now united as Americans. They have discarded their previous identities and progressed into a new one. Emulate that and you will be just as great.

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  30. Guys guys guys !!! You can see and read that the author of the article above is learned and he is just expressing his opinions. Why haul insults at him? It goes to show how backwards some of us are. We are full of hate and jealousy. One very important point I got from him is that he prays that a day shall dawn when people shall vote not for tribe. That a many a people are still illiterate (like those insulting). Really how do you insult a group of people and expect the same people to give you a vote? Logic beats me. And why are people surprised that loadshedding is back in certain areas after the election? Did they expect it to go without a strategic plan in place? Ba Zed twasebena please wake up pipooooo! We deserve better.
    FUNtastic article.

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  31. Guys guys guys !!! You can see and read that the author of the article above is learned and he is just expressing his opinions. Why haul insults at him? It goes to show how backwards some of us are. We are full of hate and jealousy. One very important point I got from him is that he prays that a day shall dawn when people shall vote not for tribe. That a many a people are still illiterate (like those insulting). Really how do you insult a group of people and expect the same people to give you a vote? Logic beats me.
    And why are people surprised that loadshedding is back in certain areas after the election? Did they expect it to go without a strategic plan in place? Ba Zed twasebena please wake up pipooooo! We deserve better.
    FUNtastic article.

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  32. We may debate tribalism for years but will never find a solution to this scourge if a credible leader does not emerge in Zambian politics. As the writer of the article has rightly put it, tribalism or racism is in human blood. Every time the Zambian football team has played another country I have supported Zambia and every time Muhammad Ali fought a white opponent I supported Ali. I am not racist but the human nature in me forces me to align with my kind. As humans, we may never ever get rid of tribalism but with efforts we may reduce its effects. We should abolish chiefdoms in Zambia, adopt a common language which is neutral (this may take hundreds of years but we can start) and delete all provincial boundaries, no person should work in a province where they come from, etc, etc.

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    • @36,Tribeless..KK tried all that to a greater extent and it achieved some success. On language some ethnic groups fought hard that we just keep English as the official language. Even when teaching in local languages was introduced by PF some section of the Zambian society accused them of scheming to make Bemba a defacto national language when the real intention came from a long term research that concluded that early child education is more effective if conducted in language and culture of a child. But….some sections of society are too sensitive about their identity and too scared of others without valid proof! It is a tragedy!

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  33. I don’t care what each contributor or reader will say or what their reactions to this piece of writing. This is a scholarly article – very well written and bringing out evidence as we have had from history. Well done writer. If only all us such pieces of work away from our political inclinations….. Sad that we can’t! GOD BLESS ZAMBIA!

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  34. To isolate Zambia, Africa from the entire world, gives you the knack to call us ‘tribal’. Please, you analytical dwarfs, in Australia, we have the far right/left wings; in Britain we have the right & left wings, in USA we have traditionally Red/Blue States. These nations I’ve mentioned are developed, literate and democratic. What is tribal about their policy inclinations?

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  35. You are at liberty to choose a leader based on shared aspirations, goals, etc. If you are convinced someone from your grouping whether club, province, gender, church etc will bring about the good you envisage, then choose them.
    We should tolerate each other. Today we can divide Zambia based on political affiliation, tomorrow it will be social standing. I am worried with the many poor people, street kids and unemployed youths who stand around and stare when I drive by.
    Arabs who are moslems kill each otherdaily because some are sunni while others are shiite.
    There is no end to discrimination. At the end of the day each person is selfish and may eliminate family members for their own benefit.
    Discrimination never stops with race or tribe or religion. Today it Tonga against Bemba…

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  36. WHEN IN IT’S NDUDUMWEZI THEY SAY TRIBAL BUT LUNDAZI THEY SAY STRONG HOLD. CRY THE BELOVED COUNTRY HI

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    • BUT THE MARGINS MATTER ALSO. YOU CANNOT COMPARE 36,000/200 AND 25000/3000. THE FIRST IS MORE TRIBAL. THE ECZ IS EVEN ASHAMED ON YOUR BEHALF TO PUBLISH THE REFERENDUM RESULTS BECAUSE OF THE TRIBAL VOTING OF UNPRECEDENTED LEVELS IN SP.

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  37. Tomorrow Solis will say they dont want Lenjes. Luvales against Kaondes. Nkoyas against Lozis. Mambwes against Namwangas. Ngonis against Nsengas.

    Divisions are plenty and politicians or anyone with ill intention can exploit them for their benefit.

    Zambians wake up and be united.

    Soon these politicians who are causing us to fight will start cross from party to the other and they will embrace each other. To them it is a game. To you it is emotional and highly stressful.

    Wakeup and love each other and tolerate one another. We are no longer different. We have lived together for so long we speak alike. Similar slowness, accent, pronunciation and we look alike.

    Having lived outside for many years, when I saw a Zambian, we looked alike, same complexion and general behaviour…

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  38. I am surprised how even so called learned people are fooled by politicians. They are dividing us and we are highly charged, ready to divide the country. Ready to kill one another.

    Ask the politician once he has won the elections if he wants a divided Zambia – No ways.

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  39. Let us embarrass the politicians by upholding our virtue of peace loving. Let us hold any politician accountable for inciting hatred and division.

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  40. I hate writters who are one sided. You mean UPND did call PF names? Your writing was supposed to be unifying in nature. MCS MHSRIP was insulted till to the grave by HH but you have not said anything. It’s not Tongas who are bad and it’s not all bembas who are bad. These are the key fundamentals the article was supposed to talk about. Every tribe has positives and negatives. So, when writing, please include all tribes categorically their negatives and find solutions to each of those. But the writer has an accusing finger. We can not build a United and Proud Nation with such writing.

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  41. It is OK. Why do you wanna single out Tongas. (Me), I am Bemba but I don’t care, they have their own reasons. Even if they do that are they able to win? Even (us) Bembas we vote in a tribal way. our love for Ba Sata is based on the same principles you have outlined above.

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  42. This is a well researched evidance based article if one understands this academic writing. It looks at both sides of the coin and makes global comparisons.Keep it up. This is a constructive issue well turbulated other than perpetuating the same culture of tribal extremism and bias.

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  43. Don’t ever forget why KK introduced the one party is because of this nonsense. For the sake of those who don’t read be informed that even within Unip there were regional divisions this was the reason KK scrapped the position of Vice President. The position caused frictions between tribes. He brought in Prime minister (Tongas and Lozi) , Secretary General (Easterners)

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  44. The topic and the data in the main body do not tie up. What the analysis shows is that all Zambians behave in the same manner.

    And has voting been purely based on ethnicity? What about party policies and party performance, promises, etc.

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  45. i am not Tonga but the most tribalistic people in Zambia have been Bembas but it is good to see GBM and others departing from this Bemba poetry of Tongas as tribalists. Look at Sata,he was the most tribalist president Zambia had ever known and Lungu is the most violent president Zambia has ever known. But what is wrong to say it is now time for a Tonga to rule? We need a Tonga president, loss president, Kaonde, Lunda and Luvale presidents etc. Actually we need presidency to ratite the pronvinces.

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    • If you are saying Bembas are tribal tell me how many tongas from your party willingly joined PF but I can point at GBM, SAMPA, MULENGA, NALUMANGO, LUPANDO these are very senior bemba politicians who said NO to tribalism and joined UPND. So how tribal are Bemba. You people just have natural hatred for Bembas. You call us thieves. Thank God we are thieves and we thank God for you Tonga Angels. Judgement is coming when we shall be judged on our thieving behaviour. God bless u.

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    • They gathered are the money Chiluba spent including what he spent on toilet tissued and claimed he had stolen millions if he how did mwanawasa fail to convict him even after using the London court. He was a zambian lawyer but failed to convict his fellow Zambian and rushed to London. Ubupuba.

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  46. The persecution of the bembas and easterners between 2001 and 2008 will never be forgotten. The tonga people led by Magande procured funding and instituted investigations against Frederick Chiluba and any bemba who did not worship the golden calf. Even if there was a re-run today (highly unlikely), we will show the zambian people why a Tonga President can’t be trusted. HH was backed by a cartel that hates bembas and easterners. Look at Nevers Sekwila Mumba; he is a disgrace to his tribesmen. Nevers looked the other way when Chiluba was being persecuted. Tongas and their surrogates failed to break the spirit the of Frederik Chiluba; he died a free man. There are people in Zambia today who will never worship the golden calf. The will of the people was clear on 11th August, 2016 and no…

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    • Unfortunately it was in Magande’s era and his fellow Tongas, according to you, that the economy improved. So what else are you trying to insinuate.

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    • This statement is interesting to me because all this time I thought Chiluba was genuinely prosecuted for mishandling Zambian resources so it was all tribal. This is serious.

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    • The Zambian Economy has never improved. The gaining of Kwacha or enough forex reserves but high poverty levels does not mean Zambia had developed in that period. The kwacha gained but poverty was rampant every where with roads full of potholes in townships. Long lines in hospitals with no medicines but strong kwacha and huge forex reserves. shame

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    • Chiluba was not genuinly probed. It was a cartel of a certain tribe headed by mwanawasa who launched an attack on Chiluba after giving then power on silver platter. Zambians are aware about this. just HH like enjoying other peoples effort Mwanawasa took over after Chiluba had succsfully fought for debt cancellation and the country had money and they think mwanawasa improved the economy. We all know what happened

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    • This now getting more interesting, so why didn’t chiluba just handover power to a fellow Bemba man in the name of Michael as , I think, he was the next in line according to positions in the party at the time?

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    • Chibula handed over power to Mwanawasa just like we saying becuase he was not tribal blinded. He had worked with Mwanawasa and he new could rule so he gave him power irrespective of tribe. Now let ask do u think HH will hand over power to GBM after losing the 6th time?

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    • @Ask Munkombwe thanks for correcting the misconception most people have. Whilst FTJ Chiluba had his faults he also achieved quit a lot! He steered the country through a tough time that led to debt cancellation which led to appreciation of the kwacha,enough resources for economic and social investment. The Kansanshi and Lumwana Mines that Levy Mwansawasa was using as having opened the NW were started in FTJ’s time. Yes,hatred blinded Levy to only see the wrong in Chiluba when actually part of the plunder was used bring Levy to power. Magande only came at the tail end of a long painful process of qualifying Zambia for debt cancellation! It is FTJ,his Ministers (Kasonde,Penza,Nawakwi,Katele) and sacrifice of Zambian people that led to debt cancellation but final result matured during…

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    • Chiluba implemented Structural Adjustment Programme (SAP) characterised by pruning or downsizing the civil service, privatisation, removal of price controls, liberalisation of the economy, democracy. Enhanced Structural Adjustment Programme (ESAP) , Highly Indebted Poor Country (HIPC). These were phases required before reaching the completion point (HIPC) completion point. THIS WAS GREAT WORK THE MAN DID, after taking over an economy that was down on its knees. The man was bold and he laid the foundation for the economic dispensation that we enjoy today! History must be written in its proper context. CHILUBA was a DAMN GOOD PRESIDENT! That is why I thank ECL for renaming the University to built in Luapula after FTJ!

      Mwanawasa and Magande came to reap where FTJ had sowed. They only…

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  47. Our hopes for a vibrant nation need not depend on good men, they should be premised on:

    . Good democratic systems
    . Good democratic structures, and
    . Good democratic laws

    We need to greatly reduce Presidential powers. The power at Lusaka must be shared with the people at the Regions, down to the grass-roots.

    We need to deconcentrate, decentralise, devolve power, and federate: politics, economics, and legislation!

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  48. Only people who are not educated and those who learn to write and ready on the street can use insults on this page. i really wonder why insults instead of expressing your self in a normal way is very much used by PF followers. Does it mean all these PF believers who are commenting online are street venders. I say street venders because those are the people who does not watch their languages when discussing matters. If you want to go through all the comments written in different newspaper online, then you will find hundreds and hundreds insults written by PF believers. It just shows a shameful discussion to the people of zambia. I am a zambian leaving abroad. Just to ready insults is not funny. Be mature and write sensible words than insults.

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    • You are lying. Count the number of people who are insulting here and you will notice that 80 perc are UPND cadres

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  49. HH lost the elections because he is tribal – period. Zambians don’t need the skills of a tribal leader no matter how great and that is why HH lost. HH has never disassociated himself from the persecution of bembas / Easterners between 2001 – 2008. Somebody must apologise for that nonsense otherwise Tongas will forever be associated with persecution of late Frederik Chiluba and prominent bembas.

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  50. An article well started but like the party and groups it intends to protect, it fails to show how those who cry victim very loudly can be the actual culprits.It starts by displaying election results for 2001 but fails to expose and explain that BY Mwila lost miserably to Levy in Bemba speaking areas,yet Levy was not a Bemba! He says Lusaka and CB are urban areas and people are more objective in voting but fails to explain why Sata and his PF swept UPND and FDD out of Lusaka and MMD out of urban CB! He/She fails to objectively refer to the rise of PF in these areas due to skillful political mobilisation that Sata had! The author omits the election patterns in 2008 Presidential by-election to show again how PF was growing and how certain regions voted so that a consistent picture can be…

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  51. This article is utter bunkum gone full cycle! You bet it’s written by a Luapulan, those chaps who would never ever vote for anyone from North Western, Southern or Western. I nearly puked at the vile stink of bigotry oozing from this piece of literature s.hit, just how gutless could a Katangese Nyamulenge be?

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    • @55,Mulenga..I can see you hardly read and endeavored to comprehend it! This article is one writing trying to justify those who fail to see merit in others but their own and denounces the very innocent people you are insulting!

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  52. ..cont’d.. built to help in conclusions. He also conveniently omits recent 2015 election results to help readers conclude how some regions have embraced other leaders in the last one year and how others have done the opposite. He accuses some PF leaders of having insulted Tongas. I believe Kambwili didn’t insult but only drew a comparison. Some of the people that said nasty things against UPND and Tongas are now darlings in UPND-Sampa (2 weeks of PF in power mocked Tongas that they would never rule Zambia),Scot( called them a minority group..),the Post (called UPND a Bantustan party), Masebo (told Tongas to embrace others otherwise they wud never rule Zambia). The author omits 2016 results which show how HH gained reasonable votes against Lungu while Lungu score miserably in some…

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  53. Bembas are not tribal or religionists. If they wanted, they would have voted for Sinkamba, Nawakwi and GBM and the daughter. But they look at Character of individuals. Bembas says; icikwanka bachimwena ku mampalanya. Like some one has mentioned, FTJ when handing power, he didn’t look at his tribes men or region but at the Character. Same applies to MCS, when handing power for Acting President, he didn’t look at Mulenga Sata or Miles but character of ECL despite coming from poor background.

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    • I think I agree. Bembas had more interest in UPND where they had a staunch Chitimukulu supporter GBM than in PF where an Easterner and a Lozi were running but they still voted for PF. And If you look at cross tribe marriages in Zambia, Bembas were among the very first to cross marry their offspring before other tribes joined in.

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  54. The idea here is to invoke tribal hate and tension. You chaps are so naïve. You think tribal conflict is a one day kids game?. Please stop it.

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    • @Franz Fanon, Let the people debate and express themselves. Some of us who have declared ourselves citizens of the world are learning alot from this. This is important information that can enhance business decisions.

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    • For example there is still a lot of money to be made in so divided a nation because decisions will be made by the nation that will always be inefficient because they will be aimed at defeating the one tribe or two as opposed to avoiding money drains. But money does not just disappear in drains, it also accumulates somewhere, like energy. It can neither be created nor destroyed, it can only be changed into other forms, that is why we buy the same copper we sold except it is at a higher price. So if you are clever look for somewhere. To me the above article is a “barometer” of tribalism in Zambia.

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  55. cont’d….in some regions where the PF has tried hard to do more to win acceptance and consolidate national cohesion. What reasons do people of Western Province have for not voting for Lungu and PF when one of the most expensive infrastructure projects have been undertaken taken there?On average PF has done a lot in Southern Province even to revive the agric sector. What is the real dissatisfaction that the people of Southern Province have against PF and Lungu and the MMD from Mwanawasa’s time to date that they believe only HH or Mazoka were going to solve? If Bembas were tribal they would have voted for UPND were GBM is rather than for Lungu and Inonge wina! When writing an article that touches on sensitive issues PLEASE BE OBJECTIVE!!

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  56. Chiluba’s cabinets used to look like this ONE ZAMBIA, ONE NATION;
    Kabunda Kayongo, Keli Walubita, Sikota Wina, Princess Nakatindi Wina, Akashambatwa Mbikusita Lewanika, Inonge Wina, Godfrey Simasiku, Vernon Mwaanga, Bennie Mwiinga, Daniel Munkombwe, Vincent Malambo, Samuel Miyanda, Syamukayumbu Syamujaye, Syacheye Madyenkunku, Ackson Sejani, Levy Mwanawasa, Yusuf Badat, Dipak Patel, Stan Kristafor, Guy Scott, Simon Zukas, Godfrey Miyanda, Christon Tembo, Peter Chintala, Josiah Chishala, Michael Sata, Peter Machungwa, Dan Pule, Katele Kalumba, Eric Silwamba, Edith Nawakwi, Ronald Penza, Derrick Chitala, Lawrence Shimba, Patrick Kafumukache, David Saviye, Humphrey Mulemba…

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  57. The writer is correct rural folks are on the whole illiterate by ‘Western Standards,’ but on the whole the writer is wrong in failing to award them literacy in Tribal Cultural knowledge. They uphold our history and origin by remaining immune to Western educational standards. They are not stupid or incapable of understanding the purpose of choosing a Leader to Lead them because even in olden times these matters were decided by perhaps…not Western Democratic standards.

    The problem is indeed Tonga but only because a mischievous son of the Soil HH, has honed out a party that tells them that a Tonga needs to be president and he has spread this nonsense among illiterate Tongas. There is also the issue of BRE and the separation of Zambia into The old three Rhodesias. That folks is…

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    • Illiteracy and lack of education are two different things. Literacy just means being able to read. Zambia has over 80 percent of its population able to read. Whether they are educated is another question.

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    • Zoona Most people mistake literacy for Education or intelligence. Literacy is just the ability to read and add up in simple maths.

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  58. That folks is the problem today NOT illiteracy, since we can see from Mwanawasa’s case that he won support after Chiluba (Northerner), recommended him in a show of adoption, such that Copperbelt, Even Eastern voted for him because he was UNITY personified. It’s time Zambians stopped kidding themselves, that UPND under HH constitutes a credible opposition. UPND, as a party is suffering from Group Psychosis under a ‘Charismatic Leader,’ who has managed to infect a lot of innocent Zambian Citizens with its Cultish approach. UPND, says “We are the panacea to cure all Zambian ills,” look at us in the party. “We are Rich, Educated, you can be too if you vote us in.” Required is that you suspend your belief system and let the Charismatic Leader feed you disaffection from your…

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  59. RIGGED SYSTEM IN SP- WHERE IS ELECTORAL DANGEROUS VJ?
    A ka good piece layed out there than Neo’ s rants. However Tonga’s and tribal cousins voting for one of their kind is not the biggest deal here. We are now getting used to this phenomenon to a point where CK mocks them that they would vote for a stone as long as it is tagged Tonga. What buffles me to this date is how they manage to pull shots at those numbers. Don’t they die or was it the unlawful advent of lorries fierying electorates to the booth and warning them to vote for HH, or VJ at it? I can give an 80% turn out in SP. I feel there has to be a forensic audit to understand those numbers in SP. Otherwise, the ECZ is not in control and there is unprecedented Ghost voting in SP. Mmmmmh they don’t die ai. Mind blowing. Someone…

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    • Yeah! analogous to somebody drawing a salary even when they don’t work o n account of dying or retiring. The aging (old) and weak, the sick and the dead still vote. Mmmmmh gentlemen. I smell a rotten racket of vote abuse is SP. As soon as we are done with the UPND petition we will need answers on what is going on in SP. In other provinces’ voter turn out is an average 56%. SP is impressively 80%. SP surpasses LSK in as far as voting is concerned. We shall surely need to understand whose lorries where used to fierry Ghost voters from their deepest further areas of SP. I mean its too much. 39,000 HH to 42 ECL. Again, mind blowing electoral thieving.

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  60. So you expected the Tongas to vote for an empty tin like Lungu who simply went around the country with singers and without outlining his vision? They voted for whom had a better vision for Zambia unlike others who voted for PF simply to keep a Tonga from winning evening though all evidence suggested that Lungu is a lousy leader.

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  61. The writter emphasis is mainly on illiterate of 70%,as can be seen on this blog by some comments.He also mentioned those who are educated but exploite the uneducated by feeding them with falseholds and deceiption as they want to continue to enrich themselves.zambia needs true statemen at this stage.

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    • Literacy rate is over 70 %. This illiteracy rate is wrong. I am surprised informed people dont know the literacy rate and take any number as a given.

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    • @67.1 MMKS I agree with you! That is a very correct big lie!! A quick check on some world stats puts Zambian literacy at 61% ( and that is counting in terms of those that can read and write and English) so where this author pulled his stats from is a great wonder! I do recall that under KK Zambia had the highest literacy rate at about 80% so even if we can drop, we can touch a low 30% within the last 25 years! This author ooo…!

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  62. After August 11 I stopped being UPND supporter because they want UPND to be a Tonga party

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  63. Even within the NWP tribes there are divisions. Chibuluma Kalengwa ward PF adopted a Chokwe this made Luvales angry and opted to vote a Luvale who stood on Upnd. This is the only ward in Kalulushi which is not held by PF

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  64. don’t laugh please, this is real and am in southern province. my 86 year old grandmother asked me a question: do we expect elections again before i die? i told her that it was possible especially that there was a petition. She told me that she wanted another green chitenge to be used as a donation at the wedding for her grand daughter – our youngest sister. When i asked her who she would vote for, she laughed and told me that the best in law she had all her life was a nyanja that worked for national service (ZNS) in kafue 30 years ago and that, in his honour, she would go for ECL. i reallised she was not concerned about who provided the chitenge but felt her old and late Nyanja in law is still ruling. Can this be tribalism?

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    • I know what you are trying to communicate. The old lady is just using tribea to identify a person. We all use perceptible aspects of anything for cognition. She isn’t tribalising. Remember there is no tribe called Nyanja. Plenty of people speak the language. In fact nowadays in my travels I see Africans trying very hard to see differences between Anglophone and francophone citizens. This arises from wanting to identify

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  65. Reading these comments make one wonder if the colonialists were right about us lacking the ability to govern ourselves.

    A lot of time is spent on our differences than what we have in common which is the essential ingredient to development.

    The truth is that we are stuck together, why not make the best of it. You can be proud of your own tribe/heritage while loving and working with other tribes.

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    • One of the best comment I’ve read. Keep it up. You should have seen smiles among the boers in the just ended election in RSA. They are happy ANC is dying and just a matter of time before the Negro gets shunted to the back bench. I think a white candidate can scope the President very easily now in Zambia. One party states of the post independence era give false sence of unity. Thanks Comrade.

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  66. The fallacy in this argument is that Tongas are better disposed than other tribes because they are farmers. I beg to differ because that alone does not qualify HH to be a leader. There are a lot more other qualities than being a successful farmer. Anyway, the whole issue is not that Tongas are hungry for development and that is why they want to vote for someone who understands them. The agricultural sector has not been doing well in Zambia not because a Tonga hasn’t been at the helm of political powers. I am 100% sure that even if HH was president, he would reverse that trend. There are a lot more other factors such as crop diversification, overly dependence on the government for farming inputs, poor rainfall patterns in the country etc. My own take on the Tonga vote is that it is purely…

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    • In marketing, one must convince to deliver quality product to his customers and therefore when analyzing the pattern of voters in this country you must first consider how much each party sold itself to the areas where they obtained the lowest number of votes. For example if a party thinks a certain people can be low as to vote for a stone instead of a credible candidate then that party automatically disqualifies itself because of its insult on on my intelligence. The intelligence of all Zambia does not depend on the region from where they come from and for some tribes to consistently talking of other tribes as more tribal than others does not make sense.

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  67. If this article was written by a North-easterner, accolades would jam pack cyberspace. See what that Tayali guy and that Bwalya ‘lawyer’ churn out. GIGO all the time, but see the ‘velvet’ praises that are showered them.

    Bakwetu, numbers don’t lie. Well argued article. In fact these trends go back in time. Notably the North-easterners have always preferred their own since 1964. The facts are there for anyone to see. But they are always the first to call others tribal. Surely a leader worth their salt can’t say the stuff from the likes of Mumbi Phiri, Chama and Kambwili. Ask if these three fellows ever voted for any other rather their kinsmen and their cousins. And don’t use the Mwanawasa episode because Chiluba, a North-easterner, annointed him. That was the only basis for voting…

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    • From 1964? You certainly want to see what you want to see. Kaunda a north easterner? No. Chiluba? No.Mwanawasa? No. Banda an easterner was defeated by a northerner so where is your theory here? You want to group people so you can take a convenient poke shot at them. Just like the racists did.

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  68. We know that the cartel wants to take over.there will be cival war in Zambia if the court nulifies the elections.Those judges will be in trouble.Some UPND were saying we have a Tonga Chibomba,Sitali and Mulemba as our Judges.They know that Chibomba wants HH to be a president.They are determined to put the country on fire in order to send HH in state house by all powers.UPND has 4 Judges in constitution court.(Chibomba(Tonga),Sitali(Lozi),Mulembe(Northwestern),Mulonda(central-Kaseba’s relative).Cartel is now celebrating.Watch the space before Zambia goes on fire.Already Tongas are beating bemba and sengas in Namwala and other parts of the country.The will of the pipo should prevail.We want peace and not tribalist to take over Zambia by force.We warn the constitution to be very careful…

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    • Muzo fish your comments are the ones that can put our country on fire. How can you say if PF loses the petition Zambia will be on fire! Who appointed those Judges sitting on the constitutional court? Isn’t it the PF President? The way you are saying it is like you have already passed your own judgement and just waiting for those judges to rubber-stamp it.I fear for our beloved country!!

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  69. At least we can now see why znbc tribalism only airs bemba adverts and songs on their english channel. Thats there warped version of one zambia one nation. What a country of bred jokers.

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  70. Am proud to be a Tonga. But there is something that my fellow tribesmen fail to see. How many Presidents had MMD Chiluba, levy, Banda, Mumba/Mutati what about Upnd Mazoka, and it has always been HH, Pf sata, Lungu. Why cant we do the same. There is life after Hh. We can try a luvale, Ngoni, bemba, bisa. We are not in animal farm where we believe that fat big is always right. Let us elect new leaders in our party. Time for hero worshiping is gone.

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  71. Federal States with indigenous people as Provincial Governors is the answer and way to go period!

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  72. Awe kwena mulatalikana. How I wish ? could bring you together shake hands,hug and laugh ati aba kanshi eba Mulilo Koloboi

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