By Chris Zumani Zimba
Interns of voting powers and minutes to speak during the January 2019 National Dialogue Indaba, Lungu must be given more vote powers, seconded by HH, MMD president and so forth in that order because his party has national character and members while presidents of ‘Tutemba’ parties must be given marginal voting powers and time to speak. Once the three church mother bodies and ZCID fail to treat political party leaders as different animals in terms of types and sizes like hippos and lizards in the sea, forget it, this national political dialogue will be a total failure; there are emperors, kings, chiefs, indunas and headmen among them.
Speaking in his office this morning, Minister of Tourism and Arts as PATRIOTIC Front (PF) Mobilizing Committee Chairperson and Member of the Central Committee, Dr. Charles Banda clearned warned that the upcoming National Dialogue slated for 18th January should not embarrass President Lungu. Dr. Banda said should respect seem to be missing in the meeting; his party will remove the President from the meeting. He advised that respect is part and parcel of the Zambian culture; tradition and President Edgar Lungu should be respected. He said that it should not be an opportunity to disrespect the Head of State because the opposition will have a chance to meet and speak with him on the topic Dialogue for Reconciliation and Unity.
Dr. Banda said this against a background of what happened in 1996-97 when a meeting of all opposition political parties was called at Mulungushi International Conference Centre to look at where national problems were lying in order to resolve issues and move in harmony. He disclosed that some political leaders and presidents of political parties thought it was a time to challenge, intimidate and disrespect the sitting President, then late Republican President Mr. Frederick Chiluba and it had to take the National Secretary of the MMD, Brigadier General Miyanda to take his party president out of the meeting.
In conclusion, there is one unquestionable political fact and reality in this country for every citizen and entity to accept and live with between 2016 and 2021; Edgar Lungu is the only democratically elected, constitutionally legal and popular legitimate President, Head of State and Government of the Sovereign Republic of Zambia. Although the National Dialogue Indaba is for Presidents of Political Parties, the fact remains that he is going there with the full jacket of being Head of State and Government; this is where he stands above and distinct from all of them including HH, CK, Edith Nawakwi, Harry Kalaba, Fred Membe, Elias Chipimo, Felix Mutati or Nevers Mumba. This means, the national dialogue indaba risk being futile and abortive if opposition leaders especially new comers from ‘Tutemba’ political parties without any traceable secretariats or national structures and members apart from their wives, nephews, nieces and friends fail to engage in a sober, mature and professional manner with him. While it is amiss to praise and worship as his new cadres, their tone and language to President Lungu or even HH must show that they understand the national political mandate, power and followership behind such men.
Chris Zumani Zimba is a prolific Political Scientist, Analyst, Author, Blogger, PhD Scholar, Researcher and Consultant. Besides being the CEO and Managing Consultant at Chrizzima Democracy University (CDU) in Zambia, he analyses African politics weekly on Voice of the Cape Town, South Africa every Wednesday at 16:45hours CAT. So far, he has authored more than 10 political and academic books as well as published over 100 well researched articles.