Edgar Lungu…. WHY?


Dear President Edgar Lungu,

Our national TV news always reminds us to be One Zambia and One Nation as it starts. A motto which made us see each other as Zambians, before we see a Luvale, a Lozi, a Chewa, a Tonga, a Bemba, etc. We have always had political differences even before independence. Those power struggles then, did not make us forget our common goal, to be liberated. We settled for KK who did a good job to be inclusive in terms of leadership, job opportunities and development. Even his preferred music band was Amayenge because of the ability to sing in almost all Zambian languages.

We had another power struggle when we fought against one party state but that never jeopardised our common Zambian identity. We did not forget the common goal of multiparty democracy. FTJ was chosen as the torch bearer and we defeated the one party state. Chiluba had to lead us though an economic recession, he had flaws in terms of managing national resources but we can’t point to any action that attempted to disunite us. He used his political skills to hold to an important asset every politician should cherish i.e. the ability to unite people. He declared Zambia a Christian nation, he sold people houses across the country and he maintained a diverse cabinet.

Then another power struggle came as a result of FTJ’s bid to run for a third term. Men and women in MMD government then, did not think about keeping their jobs, like the current PF cabinet but thought about Zambia. That is why they fought for the constitution that barred FTJ, for some their political careers ended. Even an attempt by Sata to take advantage of the chaos by drive out his rivals form MMM to create an opportunity for himself to takeover power, didn’t work. Despite late Sata smelling the coffee, FTJ betrayed him and chose Levy Mwanawasa. See, even in defeat FTJ decided to put Zambia first and chose a better leader in Levy Mwanawasa, a decision most Zambians only appreciated in hindsight.

Late Levy Mwanawasa was very unpopular as he started his presidency, with an election petition by Mazoka and a fierce critic in Micheal Sata. This lack of popularity did not tempt him to divide us. He simply used our common aspiration of fighting corruption and upholding the rule of law. His short-lived reign was cushioned by a healthy economy and clear economic direction.

What lesson can be draw from these battles for power? You fought for the PF candidacy against Guy Scott and others but these power struggles never put Zambia first. Their violent nature, the corrupted courts and the deception spell a curse on your reign that ensued. PF currently has basically abandoned the reasons people gave it the mandate and it happened under your watch.

The power struggles you currently have with HH and other political opponents should not tempt you to divide Zambia. It’s is under your leadership that distrust among tribes is slowly building in civil service. That is why your own guilt led you to proposing to delete our details of descent from the NRC. Your hunger to hold on to power is clear for everyone to see and you seem ready to divide Zambia in order to get it. Don’t abrogate the constitution for your own ego. Don’t abet violence through your cadres to enjoy a sense of power. Don’t address the Zambians, divisively using an attitude of “them” versus “us”. Stop blackmailing Zambian voters with development which is funded by all tax payers. The words you have tolerated your ministers to use against some Zambians are still stabbed in their flesh waiting for you to unplug them. You once shocked us at burial of Salome Kapwepwe when you claimed that there was no longer one Zambia, one Nation. Well, nothing will ever manage to divide us completely, not your 2026 dreams, not your arrogant cabinet and not your one-party state hidden agenda.

The question begging answers is why haven’t you learnt form the historical power struggles we had in the past, where we had differences but never at the expense of our unity or the constitution? Why are certain tribes losing jobs in your government? Why are you categorising fellow Zambian critics as bitter, xenophobes or doomsayers? Why is your cabinet, permanent secretaries and boards of directors not diverse? Why are you dodging the dialogue process by the most unifying institution in the country, the church? Why are you not fighting corruption the cancer creating inequality in our society? A cancer with a tumour spreading throughout the governance system from ECZ to Concourt. It’s a cancer that when allowed to keep growing the result is a dictator and the oppressed and then war. Why is your corruption fight a sham? Why are poor people to you merely electoral asset with a cheap price tag like sugar or cooking oil? Why? Why? Edgar Whyyyyy!

Richard W

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