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Sunday, April 18, 2021

Can the Proposed Medicine Cure the Disease? Is UPND the Answer?

Columns Can the Proposed Medicine Cure the Disease? Is UPND the Answer?

By Sean Tembo – PeP President

1. Any well-meaning Zambian will agree that the Patriotic Front and its Government have failed to properly manage the affairs of this country. Among the areas of failure are; the economy, corruption and breakdown in the rule of law whereby a PF cadre has more authority than any member of the security or defense wings. Similarly, any well-meaning Zambian will agree that if we are going to make progress as a nation, we need to change Government on 12th August this year.

But change Government from PF to who? Well, any honest person will agree that the UPND are currently the most well-positioned in line. They have the most support on the ground, they are the longest existing and have the most representation in Parliament. But is the UPND really the solution to our economic meltdown, endemic corruption and total breakdown in the rule of law? Are they really the cure to our disease?

2. To answer this important question, we need to fairly and objectively look at the solutions which the UPND are offering and how different those solutions are from what PF has been doing which has failed to achieve much.

3. Let us start with the economy. The economy is paramount in the governance of any nation. But it is even more so in the context of Zambia because our poverty levels are just too high. I have always held the view that it is blasphemous for a country as rich as Zambia to be so poor. We have so much potential in almost all sectors of the economy whether it be agricultural, mining, tourism etcetera, but we have very little to show for it. From one administration to another, all they have done is to sing about how much potential Zambia has. No administration to date has succeeded in converting the potential that we have into actual wealth for the benefit of our people. So if UPND is to be considered a savior to our economic ruins, then they have to present a clear solution of how they intend to convert our economic potential into actual wealth for the benefit of our people.

4. But what is UPND saying about turning around our economic fortunes? Well, they are saying that they will put the country on an IMF program and get an IMF loan. I must admit that this is the single biggest issue that l am fundamentally opposed to the UPND about. It does not matter to me whether people say l should not oppose my fellow opposition, but on the issue of how to turnaround our economic fortunes as a nation, l just can’t help it but oppose the UPND plan.

Putting the country on an IMF programme is a bad idea in more ways than one. Firstly it means that the UPND do not see all the economic potential around us which we can use to turnaround our economic fortunes. Secondly, it means that the UPND have no faith in their own ability to manage the economy and would rather place the mandate of managing the Zambian economy into the hands of the IMF. For the uninitiated, an IMF programme is a detailed list of economic policy interventions that you need to implement over a specific period of time which usually ranges between 2 to 10 years.

Once a country is on an IMF programme, it is not allowed to formulate and implement its own economic policies that are outside the policies that the IMF has prescribed. You are essentially relinquishing your authority to manage the economic affairs of the nation, and to a large extent your sovereignty too.

5. If the IMF policies were 100% good policies, l would not have any objection. But they are not. The IMF’s idea of fiscal discipline is extreme and essentially amounts to throwing away the baby with the bath water. For example, if you trim the civil service, it might appear to be a brilliant idea on paper because you are reducing the wage bill, but in reality you are seriously undermining the growth of the economy because you’re cutting down on the purchasing power of the population. In other words, the IMF has many textbook economic theories that they would like to experiment with once they put a country on their programme. Zambia and Zambians will be reduced to guinea pigs under an IMF programme. Every so often the IMF likes to test their economic theories and they always need a country to experiment on.

It is the same way that every so often, western countries always want to test their latest weapons of war and they always find an excuse to start a war somewhere. Once an opportunity for war has been presented, each of the rich countries will quickly send their troops so that they can test their latest rifle designs, latest laser-guided bombs and the like. The economic version of a war is an IMF programme.

6. For those who wish to argue that an IMF programme is a good idea, l would like to refer them to the IMF programme that was implemented on Zambia in the 1990s that was dubbed Structural Adjustment Programme (SAP). Under that programme, the IMF forced us to sell 99% of our parastatals, regardless of whether they were financially viable or not. And guess who bought most of the parastatals for a song? Multinational corporations that share the same street address with the IMF in New York City.

I always get baffled that there are some Zambians out there, some with a reasonably decent education, who think that going the IMF route is a good idea. Such naivety is what has caused this level of underdevelopment in this country. 57 years after independence and we are still talking about having three square meals a day? By now we are supposed to be talking about how to avoid obesity! Such are supposed to be our problems and not basic bread and butter issues. But to achieve that, we need to a Government that can convert Zambia’s economic potential into actual wealth using Zambians and Zambian resources. W

e need a Government that has faith in its people. A Government that has faith in its abilities to formulate and implement sound economic policies. Not a Government that will hand over its responsibilities over the economy to an institution such as the IMF. An institution that was not elected by the Zambian people? It is on this basis that l personally don’t believe that the UPND has what it takes to make a positive difference on our country, should they be given the mandate to govern on 12th August. In fact, putting the UPND in power is the worst mistake that Zambians can ever make. And l say this with utmost sincerity.

59 COMMENTS

  1. NO PARTY HAS THE REAL ANSWER AND CAN CORRECT THE ILLS AND DAMAGE TO THIS ONCE BEAUTIFUL COUNTRY
    BUT !!!!!!!!!!!!!!! NO PARTY CAN BE ANY WORSE THAN WHAT THE PF HAS DONE
    PLUS ANY OTHER PARTY WILL GIVE HOPE !!!!!!!!!! AS NOW THERE IS NONE

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  2. The man has not answered his own argument….. he clearly states 3 things that have collapsed, I.e economy, rule of law and grand corruption. How his argument just focuses on IMF leaves much to be desired. I would have loved him to address all issues that he raised before making the conclusion

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  3. Sean is lately talking some sense but why can’t this guy go out there and mobilize his party and run for the presidency? I mean talk is cheap and honestly there are not many people even reading or getting wind of his rantings. But the truth is that he knows and understand that he is nowhere near forming govt and the best he can do is trash those who are even trying to give hope to the country. He rants about PF failures and digs into UPND only to make sound that we are better off with the PF failures because according to him the other parties including himself have not much to offer. Sean should simply accept that PF has completely failed and must leave so we can have a fresh start and have some hope for the younger generation.

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  4. This man called Tembo is intelligent but lacks support from the masses. Who would say what Tembo has written has no logic? What he has written is very true about Upnd. Upnd has no logical economic program for this country. The leaders of the party are on record telling the people of Zambia that they will be bound to suffer for the first ten years during their rule until 2031. Is this what the people of Zambia want to experience? Therefore since there’s no reasonable alternative at the moment, the principle of ” the devil you know is better than the angel in the bush” should be applied on 12th August 2021. I wish this man Tembo was considered for the position of Running mate by the devil you know so that he can continue with his brilliant ideas after Lungu’s term finishes.

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  5. These opposition quacks lack substance. Sean knows himself, upnd and other opposition opportunists have no agenda for this country. On one hand, he hurls the usual corruption, economy salvo at PF on the other disagrees with upnds proposed economic plan. So what does he stand for??? The only thing PF can be pointed for is the debt. Corruption and rule of law is an opposition tactic meant to smear the image of the PF. Every country goes through economic downtowns, it’s not the end of the world. Opposition have spent the last 5 years discussing and hating ECL. They should’ve spent that time discussing ideologies, social-economic strategies, governance and constitutional strategies.

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  6. We have tried PF Rule for the last 11 years and they have failed miserably. ECL and PF are Visionless and have ruined our lives and it’s time to change the daiper and fit a clean one. HH and UPND are a Govt in waiting. Our hope is HH and UPND and we urge all Right thinking Zambians to vote for a change of Govt. ECL wants to impose himself on us thru an illegal and unconstitutional Third Term and so we must reject this. If he rigs the August Elections he will feel the wrath of Angry and Hungry Zambians. The writing is on the wall.

  7. Ako usulile ekopa nolo!
    The man you despise the most may just end up marrying your mother and become your daddy … Kikikiki

  8. He sounds like saboi, if we can’t have it, you also won’t have it mentality.
    tukafilila munsenga mentality.

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  9. NO ONE CAN OFFER A SOLUTION TO OUR PROBLEMS AT THIS STAGE
    YOU HAVE TO START AT GRASS ROOTS FIRST AND GET RID OF THE PARTY THAT GOT US INTO THIS MESS
    THEN WE START DISCUSSING A WAY FORWARD AND THAT TIME IS NOT NOW !!!!

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  10. FOR THE SIMPLETONS FOR SICK PATIENT A DR WILL CONCENTRATE OF GETTING RID OF THE INFECTION
    THEN START WITH MEDS TO HEAL THE BODY AND BRING IT UP TO SPEED

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  11. At least Sean has been clear that he has no balls to form government, but he will be opposition to UPND.

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  12. Tembo, the UPND are right, zambia needs an injection of cash at reasonable rates to stabilise things…..

    The IMF conditions are what the UPND have been preaching anyways……

    no borrowing, no over inflated contracts , no over inflated GRZ , clampdown on corruption , and austerity on part of GRZ ….no more VXs and free everything for ministers and others on the GRZ gravey train…..

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  13. Sean Tembo must know that “Politicians are like daipers, they often need to be changed and for the same reasons “. PF for 10 years has failed to Govern Zambia and it must go. Agreed HH and UPND are a Govt in waiting and our best hope going forward. They need to be given a chance becoz they have the potential to turnaround the Zambian Economy and our lives. Once in Power the People should hold HH and UPND to account. That’s what matters. The challenge is that ECL is on record saying “in 2015 and 2016 u voted me out but I am still here and I am not going anywhere “. This means that even if ECL was voted out in 2021 he has plans to rig the Election and retain power. Apparently ECL is confident that ECZ and Concourt will endorse ECL’s illegal and unconstitutional stay in Power at all…

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  14. Head to head, Sen Bullet Point tembo is a better communicator than HH. HH would do well to get UPND to work with PeP in an alliance. I know that PeP is a a kind of briefcase party but Tembo needs exposure and the country will soon warm up to him because he speaks the language that people understand. This post is so clear that even a four year old can see what Tembo is saying. There may be a few inaccuracies here and there but the communication is excellent. The IMF has changed Sean. Look at its work under Kristalina Georgieva (Bulgarian) is very different from the IMF of old.

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  15. Zambia is a member of the IMF and as such it is entitled to assistance. This idea that the IMF is out there to test its economic theories is not only wrong but also untrue. There are lots of Africans in the IMF secretariat. There is nothing sinister about its programs. However, I do like Tembo’s way of communication. It is very clear.

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  16. I wish we could export insults that we have in abundance and earn the much needed foreign exchange. What a country,

  17. Tikki you are talking too much and giving me a headache. Calm down before I kick.you. what is point of writing in upper case.

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  18. Sean Tembo if HH and UPND are unsuitable to Rule Zambia who is? Does PeP a One Man Band have the Capacity to Rule Zambia? The answer is a big NO! So Sean Tembo’s argument is to keep ECL and PF in Power. For this reason Sean Tembo is another PF Surrogate recruited to do ECL and PF’s bidding. Time for ECL and PF are long past. They must be voted out on August 12,2021. If ECL rigs the 2021 Elections as he promised he will face Angry and Hungry Zambians. To be warned is to be forewarned.

  19. Sean Tembo is talking some sense but has failed to organise his own party which like a paper tiger. Sean’s efforts will be appreciated if he came to the UPND Alliance rather sitting on the fence. The UPND Alliance is a viable project which will provide to all Zambians who are seeing how the PF has mismanaged the economy and hearing peoples’ cries on daily basis. Things are not just balancing up. The PF govt has no money to carry out its responsibilities of providing social services but surprisingly its top cadres have money to dish out than govt. Where on earth? But its happening in Zambia.

  20. This Sean Tembo has no capacity for serious analysis and reflection. Can Tembo explain why PF regime has been compelled to seek an IMF bail out package first. It is the recklessness of PF which has put Zambia into a huge debt which any new government has to find solutions to. The approach to the governance and management of public resources advanced by UPND is different from how PF has been mismanaging the economy and accumulating heavy debts which have not been applied to generate revenue in Zambia.

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  21. Sean Tembo is pretending to be an objective Analyst but we know where his bread is buttered. This is an argument to preserve the Status quo and against HH and UPND Alliance. Sean Tembo thinks Zambians are fools but they are not. Sean Tembo sounds like a beneficiary of “twusaka twandalama ” being dished out to but votes 4 ECL and PF. Sean Tembo should stop discussing other Political Parties;He should tell the Nation his Virtues and that of his Party PeP. By the way when is the PeP Convention and who is standing as Pep President and as a Presidential Candidate for the 2021 Elections. Sean Tembo should just join PF and maybe ECL will reward him. Sean Tembo should leave HH and UPND Alliance alone.

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  22. The country is still strong economically under PF but there is always room for improvement. First, from IMF or whatever, a loan remains a loan and needs to be repaid back. Borrowing loans goes with credibility. A deal is in sight, especially with improved investment environment. Two, the principle of affordable public service wages is valid. The size of public service workforce needs to relate to public revenue. When it comes to management of numbers of public service workforce, it is necessary to focus on practical issues, such as freezing new recruitments, reducing numbers of contractual workers, freezing salaries, suspending certain privileges, etc. When the situation improves, specifically when distortions are eliminated, the get set and go in the race. There is nothing that PF will…

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  23. When the situation improves, specifically when distortions are eliminated, then get set and go in the race. There is nothing that PF will not do for the country’s economy to go forward. With abundant rain, crop harvest will be better and electric power will supply will improve. The country cannot afford to go wrong. Let us just wait and see.

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  24. Sean Tambo’s analysis is very good. He gives out factual analysis. For me, if I was UPND as the in coming government I would not despise him but pick something out of his analysis

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  25. Any serious person who has listened to solutions from UPND on how to convert Zambia’s economic potential to benefit citizens knows that what Tembo says is the only solution from UPND is false and just meant to oppose UPND. Tembo writes ” But what is UPND saying about turning around our economic fortunes? Well, they are saying that they will put the country on an IMF program and get an IMF loan”. Surely Tembo, do you think Zambian citizens are foolish to think like you do that UPND is just saying the solution is to put the county on an IMF programme and get an IMF loan? You can fool some people sometimes, but you cant fool all the people all the time. Your hate for HH for whatever reason has made you blind to all the major solutions being advanced by UPND. Go well and vote for PF.

  26. How can a person who doesn’t have administrative and governance experience be the solution in first place? UPND and Hakainde Hichilema can’t be solution to any problem, because HH himself is a big problem for Zambia. We need to find his cure.

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  27. Change the government on 12 August! Change the government with whom? What is the option? Do you see any political party fit to take over? UPND, NDC, MMD…. you name it and they will have the drawbacks. Not even a single party or leader in opposition is capable of leading the country. We just saw what happened to NDC in power struggle. The party has been broken into pieces and leaders are suing each other. Can they be alternative of any kind?

  28. Sean Tembo is a good guy but must strive to be a team player, must strive to be part of the opposition despite the jealousies among themselves ,every one wanting to be a leader among themselves. These opposition guys must strive to work together in their diversities in opinion, we cant have another five years of PF, that would be catastrophic to our lively woods. Please work together, of course not for the sake of removing PF, but for the sake of coming to improve peoples livelihoods

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  29. I don’t agree with you claim Mr Tembo that UPND has the most support on the ground. If it really had, Hakainde Hichilema would have never gone of opposition alliance. The formation of the alliance and that too in the name of UPND Alliance tells it all. No need to discuss it further.

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  30. You create a problem then you fail to solve honestly. 2kg Sugar at K45.00, Zebra pen from 50ngwee to K2.00. Ati tulecita bwino economically? That is self deception. Wake O slumber and defend your country which is an inheritance to you not defending a person..

  31. Are you serious? UPND is offering any solution? I haven’t heard Hakainde Hichilema ever talking about solution. He is always cribbing and criticising the PF. If he had any solution, HH would have started talking about it. Since he is yet to tell the nation even about his manifesto, we can understand where he stands at such a crucial time!

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  32. Politicians are defending their positions which are the source of there wealth. O poor voter, what are you defending or what do you want to achieve in your voting?

  33. Our biggest challenge is having rigged electons. Like the Pareto Principle specifies that 80% of consequences come from 20% of the causes. The 20% causes are rigged elections and lack of legitimacy including accountability. Which “breed” corruption, violence, nepotism, tribalism and poor governance remain persistent problems.
    Look at Zimbabwe, ZANU-PF rigged blatantly… deliberately tampering and manipulating figures,” said Biti, quoting Stalin as having said: “It’s not the people who vote that count, it’s the people who count the votes.”
    “You can rig elections, but you can’t rig legitimacy. You can rig elections, but you can’t rig the economy, you can’t rig trust and confidence. I don’t know why the state never learns.
    “You can’t rig the social contract, you can’t rig decency, you…

  34. You seem to be thinking too much about Hakainde Hichilema and UPND. He is not that important. Instead, concentrate on your own party. PF doesn’t need your advice or help. It is capable to handle the situation on its own and sail through.

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  35. You seem to be ignorant about the massive transformation, the agriculture sector is going through. Just take information about current production of maize, cassava, cashew nut. Do you know that Zambia is now ready to export maize?

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  36. The mining sector is undergoing paradigm shift as the government has started acquiring majority stakes in strategic mines. Now, apart from tax revenue, the mines will earn profits for the nation. Hope you read newspapers and watch news.

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  37. Mr Sean Tembo, have you read the news that Zambia has been acknowledged the safest tourism destination in Africa to travel during Covid19? If not please find out about it. You need to get so many things cleared.

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  38. Putting the country on IMF programme to get loan is the most laughable solution proposed by the self proclaimed economy and business expert in the country. His one point agenda is to sell out everything to foreign investors and run away.

  39. Hakainde Hichilema wants to pay back his finders by giving them the country on platter via IMF. If anyone thinks that, once grabbed by IMF, Zambia would be free to decide its own policies and programmes, then he is living in fools’ paradise.

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  40. Sean Tembo knows exactly what is required to be done for the Zambian people to change this corrupt government but is he doing to help the Zambian people reach their destiny and move out of this mess which the PF have put the Zambian people into?
    Sean has no solution apart from criticizing the other politicians?

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  41. Sean Tembo shouldn’t take Zambians 4 granted or fools. We know who can make a good President when we see one. It’s not for Sean Tembo to tells us who should be a President of Zambia for us and which Party should Govern. HH and UPND have never formed a Govt so there is no basis for pre-judging their performance. HH would no doubt make a far much better President than ECL just based on personal achievements, personality, intelligence and charisma. HH is an entrepreneur and an economic and financial literate Politician. HH deserves a chance to Govern Zambia. He has sacrificed alot to improve the Governance of this Country.

  42. The problem with you people is that you have a short memory, either that or simply dull. HH has been giving solutions since na since. He has been vocal against borrowing for consumption but rather borrowing to invest in income generating projects. These projects would be responsible not only for generating the much needed employment to the youth but also be responsible to service the country’s debits.

  43. This author is 200% correct.

    First of all. The IMF still uses old Economic Policies, Rules of Engagement and Frameworks, which date back to 75yrs ago.

    The world has changed so much and Economic Plays Books have changed.

    The IMF is funded by investors who want high returns in profits. So when the IMF come to your country, the first thing in their mind is – how will the make money out of a nation in need of their money and policies.

    Of all the years that HH has been in opposition, he has failed to show Zambians how different he would run the nation economically.

    HH has no framework or road map. He talks about the 10 Point List, but never wants to articulate. Everytime he is given an opportunity on sitdowm intervies,  he dodges the question and beats about the BS.

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  44. @Mery there is a limit to comedy. Stop poking fun at citizens that have lost loved ones, with no chance to say their last words.

  45. cont..

    All in all. Zambia has never had a good Economic Team to negotiate when facing the IMF, World Bank, European Union. This includes those who messed up the Sovereign Bond.

    They are other poor nations who have negotiated far much better from these organisations.

    The IMF has contracts. But their CLAUSES can be negotiated if a nation has thinkers and a good negotiating Team.

    Too often, we take loans at all cost without due diligence.

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  46. Mr Tembo, I personally value your writing. I may not agree with all the points you have made, but I universally salute you for the patience and language used to articulate your points. I am not sure who trails you in the opposition politics but I can safely say according tomy opinion you are trailling no one. We need to start cultivating good communication skills in our new generation. Other wise we will have a bunckh of people writing as though they are contesting for world war 4 language wring. Keep it up.

  47. Sean Tembo, you can fool some people sometimes, but you can’t fool all the people all the times. Who told you that UPND’s solution to turning the fortunes of Zambia’s economy is putting the country on an IMF programme and getting an IMF loan only? Do you really think UPND would have the most support on the ground and have most representation in Parliament if UPND’s solution to Zambia’s economic problems were just based on getting an IMF loan? Only your gullible followers will agree with your assessment. You have already told us that you intend to support PF as the devil you know. Go ahead supporting PF but don’t make yourself the spokesman on UPND solutions!!

  48. With the way we are suffering, whatever change is necessary. Who ever comes in, it’s okay. Let’s please change, we can’t continue on this path, they have been in power for 10 years and literally everything has worsened, so what would be the rationale of keeping the same people in government who have not improved our lives even by an inch

  49. It’s like no politician in Zambia wants to speak true of the IMF, what Zambians need is very simplified information on how the IMF operates and why in the first place Zambia chose to be a member if the IMF services are a detriment to the nation moving forward economically! The failure to benefit from IMF interventions lies squarely on the ineptness of the Zambian leadership and especially the teams that negotiate terms with the IMF! This Sean Tembo seems an academic analyst not sticking with an argument he wants to share but always pivoting to attacking fellow opposition especially UPND. Never does he amplify what his party stands for and that he himself can be a better president! He is an angry man who recognizes for himself that he is not counted among ‘opposition giants’ for state…

  50. Kikikikikikijukija Hehehehehehe!
    This nigga is both hilarious, serious and delirious. Perilous moments! You doubt? Dig this “…By now we are supposed to be talking about how to avoid obesity! ” He sounds so silly but serious. Hear this”… In fact, putting the UPND in power is the worst mistake that Zambians can ever make. And l say this with utmost sincerity…”
    Yaba! Sean nasheta pushi. All Sean is saying is corrected except for one thing, PF is on the right trajectory. PF got this!
    Ifwe ni nafuti nafuti nafuchi.
    PF 100%, ECL100%, PEACE100%, ZAMBIA overdrive 100% and ELITE ZAMBIANS100%.

  51. I’m not a partisan, but I have to say the UPND and other opposition party with its leadership is a concern every Zambian should chill and have a good look at. it seems to me that HH has a dark side of him we don’t know maybe I’m wrong I mean!!! You can’t have a leader who only addresses his manifesto whenever one of his cadre members is beaten by the police or other law enforcement. and with the IMF we should stop been under their umbrella. I mean we shouldn’t get rid of it all but we just have to be careful with the borrowing. they force us to borrow more so that we keep on repaying them and at the same time we remain poor and for them, they keep on progressing and it’s not only Zambia who owe them debts, mostly is about poor African countries. Their ideology is to keep us at…

  52. Zambia is between a Rock and Hard place. Change needs to be done but the UPND whom we hope for that Change truly speaking have some traits that suggests that they may solve one problem and bring 4 four others. They may deal with the economy under those IMF stringent measures, but there traits have shown they will grab from citizens Lands, Cadre having more power and acquiring of property is not likely to change and we will likely see a country like South Africa where citizens stays in a country where they don’t own anything coz they all belong to multinational companies. This is coz of HH multinational orientation that in my view outweighs his like for sole proprietors, small partnerships and individual citizens trying their economic way out. An economy is not worthy if we Zambians…

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