Bowman the Bulldozer – is he a posterchild of transactional politics?


By Chimwemwe Mwanza

His theatrics and fulminations in the aftermath of the PF’s loss of power gave rise to a new brand of politics. Pin-point criticism, which he consistently dished to the new government, became a staple for news outlets. Not even the most contrarian punter among his faithful could have bet their house on Bowman Lusambo performing a political summersault.

What happened? For all his bombast and vow to fight the incumbent government to the bitter end, the bulldozer capitulated in the most inexplicable manner. Now, he would like all sundry to believe that he is adopting a civil brand of politics. Really? Forget the pontification of self-righteousness, this Damascus moment has marked another interesting chapter in the checkered life of Bulldozer – one of Zambia’s rising political entrepreneurs.

And they are many such. If in doubt, look no further than Charles Kakoma, Paul Moonga, Captain Cosmas Moono, Kelvin Sampa, Ephraim Belemu, Paul Moonga and Peter Daka – to mention a few. While it remains their right to affiliate with a party of their choice, their reasons for jumping ship are not only cynical but shameless too. Makes you wonder. Had PF bested UPND at the polls, would they have defected to the ruling party?
Back to Bulldozer. Curiously, he sent an apology in the way of the President asking for forgiveness for his rantings and divisive brand of politics. It would be interesting to know your response Mr President? And if Bowman was sincere about his apology, why did he not extend this to victims of his brutality. That he also helped create an intolerant political culture while he served in the former regime is fact.
Is this apology based on genuine contrition? To better appreciate his decision let us contextualise the motive.

Against the temptation to pronounce on his guilt or innocence there-off, it is a fact that the outcome of HH’s determination to uncover graft and other malfeasance allegedly perpetrated by the previous dispensation will determine whether the likes of Bowman and his ilk spend the rest of their lives in jail. And Bowman is alive to this reality. Macabre as this may sound, the Bulldozer is staring right in the face of jail.

Annihilated by a state-sanctioned seizure of a string of his luxury properties – which among other things resulted in the death of a beast held captive at one of his properties, his back is against the wall. His business accounts have been frozen, and a seemingly insurmountable burden has been placed on his persona to prove how he acquired this wealth. For a person that served the last 5 years of his life as a civil servant, this is a tall order.

By any measure, no PF member has borne HH’s wrath in the fight against corruption than Bowman. Whether this is persecution or prosecution is hard to call but those in his inner sanctum speak of a psychologically battered individual that is terrified at the mere sight of a police vehicle. Bailiffs are often not too far from his presence. How the mighty have fallen. Humiliated and facing a mountain of legal bills, reality has finally dawned upon him.

He now knows that he cannot fight a system that is determined to send him to the gallows. Did he therefore cut a deal with the state, or could it be that this apology disguised as an olive branch to the Presidency has earned him a temporal reprieve? Anything is possible but time will tell.
Interestingly, there has been a loud silence from the ACC and other law enforcement agencies since he repented.

Weep not for country but self

Jesus wept is the shortest verse in the bible. And just as Bowman wept when the PF and Edgar Lungu lost the polls, the contrast however is that Jesus wept because he was overwhelmed with the feeling of mankind’s infirmities to God.

Given the unravelling information and extent of plunder perpetrated by the previous dispensation, it is thus fair to suggest that Bowman’s tears were a result of the realisation that the PF’s loss of power effectively robbed him of the patronage networks that catapulted him to the dinner table. In short, he was weeping not for Zambia but for himself.

It remains a fact though that Bulldozer is not and has never been a true green. A die-hard member of the dead MMD party, his loyalty was to Edgar Lungu and not the PF. In fact, it is the former President who plucked him from obscurity and rewarded him with the opportunity to serve in government. Does it, therefore, matter that Bowman has decided to withdraw from the political limelight?

Who in a very real sence cares about his decision? It could well be that some members of his own party baying for his blood are happy to see his back. Good riddance, one can almost hear Chishimba Kambwili exclaiming in reaction to this development. The lesson here? Indeed, arrogance does not pay.

Even those with the most power today must be very careful. Food for thought. Over to you Cornelius Mweetwa.

About the Author: Mwanza enjoys reading Political History and Philosophy. He supports nothing but Liverpool and Magnificent Kabwe Warriors. For feedback, email [email protected]


  1. Lusambo should have been given a job in PF , not a government minister……

    That is why zambia is where it is today , in ICU…

    appointing Lusambo as minister was pure waiste of a very important position in GRZ.

    No country can thrive with ministers with lusambos calibre………

  2. A picture that stands out most to me concerning lusambo was……….

    When he stage managed the arrest of some traffic cop for taking bribes………..

    True to agonisingly shallow happless character of lungus presidency , Lusambo suddenly was gleefully appearing sitting next to lungu at functions , clapping to every utterance from lungu like a circus chimpanzee………..

    Lusambo was to be found first in line receiving lungu at airports …………

    That circus summed up how hopless lungus GRZ was………….

  3. Its only in Zambia kwena. that you see people of his calibre in high govt office. Lusambo wasnt cabinet material. He didnt know what was expected of him as a minister. He couldnt be disciplined enough to adhere to his job description so he created his own. Just like Gary Nkombo. They dont know where their responsibilities start and end

  4. LT be wary of some of these articles…these are possibly paid articles. Surely how would you call one accusing IMF for his arrest for corruption as pinpoint crictism. The man has no respect for his arresting officers.

  5. My brother Lusambo is more hardworking than the entire upnd government put together. You cannot take away his achievements. Hh is Jealous of lusambos success given he has a humble education background. Hh is s frustrated f00I

  6. B0MA ni B0MA!!
    Lelo have you noticed that greasy rotund 1di0t R@pha3l N@kat0mba is as quiet as a cornered Rat?
    Reality has finally dawned that there is only one C0mmand3r in Chief @ any given time & dare him @ your own peril.
    Ubuchenjeshi bwa k0swe’ Pungwa ta sakamana!

  7. B0M4 ni B0M4!!
    Lel0 have you noticed that greasy r0tund 1d.i0t R@pha3l N@k4t0mba is as quiet as a c0rnered R@t?
    Reality has finally dawned that there is only one C0mm@nd3r in Chief @ any given time & dare him @ your own peril.
    Ubuch3njeshi bwa k0swe’ Pungw@ ta s@kamana!

  8. Dumbwi Dozer ya malabish! only cares about himself just like his partner in crime CK. They should be in chibokaela or mukobeko.

  9. Edgar Lungu ,Bowman Lusambo,Joseph Malanji ,late Alexander Chikwanda, and Kaizar Zulu are the principal culprits of why Zambia is in the filthy dump we find ourselves today.

    • If your parents were lazy and left you and your family in filthy poor state, that has nothing to do with government but more to do with theirs and your laziness. You are a failure and will never amount to anything

  10. 1990s……..the shock of privatisation, the sale of parastatal companies and the loss of jobs and loss of family lives is still alive. Many industries which went under the bridge employed a lot of Zambians. A few individuals enriched themselves in the handling of the national assets and resources.

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