Lusaka Lawyer Kelvin Fube Bwalya has appealed to President Edgar Lungu, as Commander in Chief to halt the planned investigations against UPND Leader Hakainde Hichilema in the interest of the nation.
In his write up about the happenings surrounding the alleged sale of the Zambia Forestry And Forest Industries Corporation Limited, Mr. Fube noted if Zambians destroy each other and destroy the country, it will be that much harder to recover as a nation.
He said the recent ZAFFICO riots are just a tip of the iceberg of the many bottled-up frustrations simmering in a growing majority of Zambians.
Here is the full statement
FROM THE DESK OF:
Kelvin Fube Bwalya – KBF,
30 Bwinjimfumu Road, Rhodes Park, Lusaka, Zambia.
ZAMBIA IS BIGGER THAN INDIVIDUALS..
ZAFFICO is just a trigger being exploited!
Dear countrymen and women, I greet you all.
It is my sincere hope that government is aware that the recent ZAFFICO riots are just a tip of the iceberg of the many bottled-up frustrations simmering in a growing majority of Zambians. Having observed an escalation in tensions building towards Wednesday 14 th November 2018, I am persuaded to appeal to each one of us to introspect.
It will be folly for us as a people to ignore the current social and economic distress sweeping across the nation. We must realize that what affects one of us affects all of us without choosing one’s tribe, gender, vocation or political affiliation.
There is no act more senseless than when brothers and sisters allow differences in opinion to divide them to the extent of willfully seeking to bring harm to one another. We must take a deliberate decision to liberate ourselves from all the prejudicial classifications of tribe, political party, social standing and gender to find our common thread of belonging to this one country to which we share and hold a common responsibility to foster peace, love and prosperity.
We must realize that we fight only because we have been fooled into believing that we cannot co-exist. We must remember that there is no special shop, no special market, no special hospital for PF cadres. Nor is there a special shop, special market or special hospital for UPND cadres.
There is no special place where the soldiers or the police or the nurses or the teachers or any other set of people will go to make their lives any different from the lives of all other people. This is because what affects any one of us affects every one of us.
Whether you are a marketeer, bus driver, taxi driver, commuter, working professional, student or ordinary unclassified Zambian, the price of what you need in life will not be different from what any other fellow Zambian will pay.
We have let our poverty control us and blind us to the fact that if we stop fighting each other and unite to fight this scourge by embracing one another and leveraging that which is good and strong about each other, we will free ourselves from its shackles.
We are so willing to fight each other only because as a people we are suffering, struggling and currently see no hope. We have for over fifty years failed to realize our potential as a country and in hard time cycles such as these our frustrations grow and our tolerance levels reduce.
We must however, remember that we are one people and the nation of Zambia cannot be Zambia without all of us. Or country needs us as much as we need it and we must therefore choose to do that which is right by Zambia. We cannot choose to destroy each other and by extension destroy our beautiful nation.
Zambians must never prepare to do battle against other Zambians.
Unless some of our politicians have become so detached from reality and from the people of Zambia, any Zambian politician worth his salt is aware that there is growing disgruntlement and disappointment among Zambians over the state of affairs of our nation.
The hard truth is that our citizens in general are unhappy and frustrated about the management and direction of the country. Some people might hope that this is unique to urban areas only. Unfortunately, our people in rural areas are equally expressing the same sentiments of frustration and disappointment. What is worth noting is the fact that this is a national issue and my appeal is that we put cheap politics aside and treat it as such.
In circumstances such as our nation finds itself in, the natural inclination for politicians is to draw bold lines along adversarial party affiliations. One party will tend to take on the defensive and arrogant posture whilst the group on the other side of the divide takes on the posture of blaming and exaggerating the failures of the other side without offering any clear solutions to the challenges. With this approach, it is very easy to miss the main issue and get caught up in political trivialities and semantics whether intentionally or unintentionally.
We end up taking our eyes off the ball and instead of dealing with issues that are pertinent to our people; we get caught up in political smoke screens. For instance; all of a sudden, who incited the riots blindfolds us and takes precedence over why our people rioted in the first place. For the sake of our nation, I submit that we soberly reflect on the state of our nation with genuine intention to redirect our country. From the broad spectrum of Zambians that I have had a chance to interact with, the following issues form the core of what is afflicting and agitating the Zambian people in general:
- 1. Unemployment is too high and is the major reason for the high poverty levels being experienced in the country.
- Our economy has too many burdensome policies for the citizens.
- There is a general feeling that government is contracting huge debt for non-priority construction projects at seriously inflated prices and passing the burden to citizens.
- When government is calling for belt tightening amongst the citizens and civil servants, there is absolutely no evidence that senior government officials holding political offices are tightening their belts.
- Citizens are bottling up frustrations as they are being denied their critical rights of assembly and freedom of expression.
- Good governance and rule of law in the country is deteriorating.
- Agricultural performance has been dangerously poor and consistently negatively affected citizens in the rural areas.
- There is a consistent and constant failure by government to communicate national issues effectively to avoid unnecessary suspicions.
- There is a strong perception that our President has been held hostage by a small group of self-serving individuals.
- Citizens believe the President is not fully aware of the true state of the nation.
If as the ruling party, we don’t sober up and get to the bottom of these and many other issues of concern, shifting the blame will not make the situation any better. We can harass or arrest all those with opposing views, but without addressing the real issues, we will only succeed at mobilizing the Zambian people against President Lungu and the PF Party as a whole.
I hereby call on the PF Party and government to make a clear distinction between politics of intimidation and good governance. We, as PF are the ruling party and are entirely responsible for the state and direction of this nation. All other politicians, disgruntled elements and opposition political parties can be excused for their rumbling and political gymnastics. For us on the other hand, our actions and decisions affect every citizen regardless of their political affiliations. When the economy is not doing well, it is our responsibility to rectify the situation.
When the rule of law breaks down in the nation, it is not the fault of criminals or the opposition. The onus is squarely on us to bring back law and order. There is no excuse and there is no blaming any other party or personality. We are responsible and we better shape up and marshal the political will and unity of purpose to bring this nation back on track.
It is a known fact that the current opposition has failed to demonstrate to Zambians that they have better programs for this country. The people of Zambia are therefore still looking to the party that promised lower taxes and more money in their pockets. It is not too late to steer the boat towards the shores of prosperity.
We must also accept that though the buck stops with the President, running a country is not a one man show and the need for the President to be surrounded by an able team of noble, selfless and patriotic men and women cannot be overemphasized.
Going by the state of our nation today, it is my humble submission, on behalf of many Zambians and PF members, that perhaps it is time to have a sober look at what kind of policies we are pursuing and who is responsible for implementing them.
We only have one Zambia and if we do not guard against her destruction the country we know and the great future it holds will cease to be. Whatever our challenges and frustrations, I ask all the people of Zambia to believe me when I say the solutions to our problems lie within us. The solutions are there. To this end, I humbly appeal to my President His Excellency Mr. Edgar Chagwa Lungu, as commander in chief, to in the interest of the nation, halt the planned investigations against the UPND President.
I believe that if we destroy each other and destroy the country, it will be that much harder to recover as a nation. Let us immediately begin to make all things about Zambia and not about the political parties to which we belong. Let us move away from blaming each other and move towards consulting and correcting each other.
Without a noble and honorable unity of purpose, it shall be very difficult to get to the Promised Land. We may see it, but never reach it. Each and every person willing to willfully cause violence and chaos knows the difference between right and wrong and any Zambian who plans violence on another Zambian knows that it is wrong and unpatriotic and that Zambian has the power to do what is right and patriotic.
It is up to us to choose what kind of future we want for our children. Let us make the deliberate decision to stop fighting each other and begin to fight the poverty that surrounds us. Let us fight towards having enough for each one of us and enough left over to sell beyond our borders.
I urge all of us to choose Peace, Love and Unity.
May God bless us all and may God bless our beloved nation Zambia.
I Remain KBF.