During his last media briefing to obviously assuage people’s concerns regarding the gold scandal at Kenneth Kaunda International Airport, President Hichilema hinted that his government has since constituted an inter-ministerial team to intervene into the mealie meal crisis. If we may recall, at the height of the load shedding that rocked the nation earlier into the New Dawn Administration, Hichilema personally travel to Maamba Collieries and Kariba Dam to appreciate the magnitude of the problem. Within a flicker of an eye, a solution was found and boom – load shedding was a thing of the past!
The other ministries which have equally come under microscopic scrutiny are Information and Media, and of course, Mines and Minerals Development. These ministers should be giving thanks and praises to Almight God because the president is a kind and patient man. While the madam at Information does not seem to understand her role as Information Minister and Chief Government spokesperson, the man in charge of mines has been a let down! On one hand, he has failed to sort out the mess the Patriotic Front left behind at KCM and Mopani; while he remains completely at sea regarding Kasenseli Gold in Mwinilunga and Sugilite in Luapula province.
What do we make of all this?
Hakainde Hichilema is like a top-notch world class coach who has a brilliant game plan to lead his team to victory but some of his players keep fumbling……failing to score clear goals! A cabinet reshuffle is inevitable at this juncture Mr. President. Anyway, in our next write-up, we shall labour to review the performance of all our cabinet ministers and award scores accordingly. For now, we shall restrict ourselves to interrogating why certain players in this government can’t just score no matter how much we flog or bullock them! The same applies to Members of Parliament and Councillors across the wider political spectrum.
According to Wikipedia, public service can be defined as any service intended to address specific needs pertaining to the aggregate members of a community. But lo and behold, most of our leaders aren’t really in politics to serve, but rather to eat and eat big time while the majority of our people continue wallowing in poverty. Why are we alleging all this?
If you bothered to scrutinise the resumes of our leaders; including those aspiring to serve at different levers of leadership, you’ll discover that most of them have no history of community service. How honestly do you expect individuals without any traceable track record of extending a helping hand to those in need or indeed doing community work put in their best to meet the aspirations of our people?
Our politicians can perhaps learn a lot from Barrack Obama, arguably one of the best US presidents in modern history.
After graduating from Columbia University, punctuated with a brief working stint in New York of course; in 1985, Obama commenced work as a community organiser working in the demoralised landscape of poor neighbourhoods in Chicago’s South Side. Obama’s three-year stretch as a grass-roots organiser would feature prominently in his own narrative of his life.
“The best education I ever had, better than anything I got at Harvard Law School was working as a community organiser,” Obama would confess while on a campaign trail in Iowa.
Speaking of his political exploits, Gregory Galluzzo, a community organizer who worked with Obama would tell the press, “His identification with these people begins his political journey.”
As he succinctly put it himself, Obama received the best education of easily connecting with the people and understanding their basic needs not within the confines of the 4 walls of a class room, but by working in communities where squalor and poverty thrived like flowers during their bloom. This is what set him apart from typical politicians in Washington whose main interest is only the pay cheque like most of our politicians.
So, next time politicians come your way pleading for your votes; don’t hesitate to take them to task and ask them to give you an account of their history of community work. They may be the next fox in sheep’s skin hiding in politics to simply generate wealth for themselves and their families.
PrinceBill M Kaping’a