The United Party for National Development (UPND) has today launched the party manifesto for 2021 to 20 26.
Speaking at the launch of the manifesto, UPND President Hakainde Hichilema said that Zambia is in a crisis caused by the failure of leadership by the ruling Patriotic Front (PF).
The UPND Leader promised to Create jobs for our young people; Lower prices of fuel; Lower food prices for all Zambians; Empower our small businesses to succeed and grow; build a health system that serves all the people of Zambia; build an education system that is robust and prepares our young people to be the leaders and job creators of tomorrow; change a government that steals from the people, to a government that works FOR the people and bring REAL change. Meaningful change.
Below is the full Speech
Today the 9th of April, 2021 marks an important day in the life of our country. Everyone agrees that Zambia needs change. Not just change for the sake of change but change that is actually going to make a difference.
2021 presents Zambians a chance to experience real change for the better. We have done it before and we will do it again.
If anyone doubts whether Zambia needs change; just look around you. Unemployment. Poverty. Rising Prices. Hunger. Falling education standards. Hospitals and clinics without medicine and many more problems.
Zambia is in a crisis caused by failure of leadership by the PF. The lack of political will on many fronts shows us that the nation needs a change of leadership this year. A government that is preoccupied with winning elections as opposed to providing answers to the many challenges that the country is facing needs to be CHANGED.
Patients are going to hospitals which have no medical staff and most importantly no medicine. Children are not going to school because parents cannot afford to pay school fees. Parents are struggling with putting food on the table. This needs to CHANGE for the better.
We cannot imagine how Zambia will look like in another five years with the same party in office. This country will no longer be recognisable. It therefore should not be lost on anyone that the decision we make on 12th August 2021, will either make this country worse than it is, or give it a new lease of life towards prosperity and peace.
In a nation like ours that is fertile and plentiful, nobody should be poor. All that needs to be done to change this country for the better, is included in this document we are launching today, the UPND Manifesto 2021-26. The highlights in this transformation plan include the following:-
Create jobs for our young people; Lower prices of fuel; Lower food prices for all Zambians; Empower our small businesses to succeed and grow; build a health system that serves all the people of Zambia; build an education system that is robust and prepares our young people to be the leaders and job creators of tomorrow; change a government that steals from the people, to a government that works FOR the people and bring REAL change. Meaningful change.
The Manifesto explains how we will address the areas we have listed above. At the top of the list, is job creation. The country has capable and qualified young people, but there are no jobs. Our small businesses which will also create employment, need financing, business support and market linkages, so that they not only survive but thrive for sustainable job creation.
We intend to support private sector so that it’s easy for them to do business. This will happen through policy consistency and law reforms that will support private sector to thrive and create jobs. We are also going to invest heavily into the agriculture sector. This will be done by increasing production and productivity as well as connect producers to profitable markets. Agribusiness which is value addition will also be supported in agriculture for purposes of creating jobs. We will not rest until food is affordable and every Zambian has three meals or more a day.
Education has and remains a top priority for us. We shall not rest until every child who needs to be in school is in the classroom, learning. Many of us, including myself, are products of an education system that served both the rich and the poor. We are also making an undertaking in this Manifesto to reform the education system to a two-track system that is vocational and academic.
Under this system there will be no failures as seen today. This is the same education system we would like to create, until that happens, we are not resting. Until there is medicine in hospitals we will not rest. Our Government will work ceaselessly until the hospitals have healthcare personnel and ensure that a functional healthcare system is created for all Zambians.
Lastly, we will fight corruption with everything at our disposal. Corruption is stealing from the public. People pay taxes, fees and fines, but they end up in pockets of individuals. Currently there is no medicine in hospitals because of corruption. People were supplied with faulty condoms and expired drugs because of corruption. New roads only last for one year instead of the recommended ten years, because of corruption. We cannot move forward as a nation without rooting out this cancer that is fast consuming our nation.
These are not just promises but a personal commitment and social contract we are signing with the people of Zambia. This is a strategic document backed by a solid plan of actions and reforms, such that from the day we set foot in office, the people of Zambia will feel the difference.
This election is not about the candidates contesting elections, these elections are about the people. God bless you and may He bless our Country.