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Tuesday, 17 June 2008

Dual Citizenship Proposal : Blog Specials

A debate is raging in Zambia and the diaspora on Dual Citizenship. As you know Zambians abroad cannot take part in the current National Constitution Conference and are not even recognised by the National Constitutition Conference Act 2007. However, we can all voice our opinion and hopefully help shape the debate on this issue from the sidelines. In the next couple of days, I'll highlight the various pieces that has been written, and still being written, on the proposal for dual citizenship. In the mean time do familiarise yourself with the Mung'omba Draft Constitution .




Read this document on Scribd: Mung'omba Draft Constitution
All blogs relating to "dual citizenship" would be found under the "diaspora" tag clouds - lengthy and coherent contributions may be turned into "guest blogs" to aid the discussion on this important issue.

7 comments:

  1. That's gonna be interesting..

    That said an Indian friend convinced me that there's something disturbing about citizen living abroad voting and having parliamentary representation (in India, Italy and a few other countries, they have seats in parliament). Basically the issue is "representation without taxation is tiranny".

    Citizenship is an entirely different issue though.. Although, I bet voting rights is part of the issue.

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  2. I think with citizenship comes other responsibilities..

    But I think the mistake people see is to see Dual Citizenship on through the perspective of the diaspora.

    What about Dual Citizenship as a positive incentives for expatriates to stay in Zambian and contribute more?

    Anyway...such are the issues we need to discuss...let us see what Kyambalesa is saying..

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  3. What about Dual Citizenship as a positive incentives for expatriates to stay in Zambian and contribute more?

    Stay and contribute ?

    Come on, right now, they're taxed and don't vote. And you want their exploitative presence in Zambia to be protected too ?

    (I wonder how Mr K's tax exemption for "indigenous" businesses would work if the evil foreigners had dual-citizenship)

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  4. I suspect MrK would restrict dual citizenship to Zambians abroad not foreigners in Zambia!

    I guess my support for extending to foreigners in Zambia is purely because I believe in the tripod : markets and democratic institutions work better when underpinned by strong moral and cultural institutions. So its natural for me to see anything that reinforces social ties (contracts?) between foreigners and Zambians as good for Zambia.

    By the way, have you tried this test? My political compass!
    Mrk is in your camp am sure....lol!

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  5. I suspect MrK would restrict dual citizenship to Zambians abroad not foreigners in Zambia!

    Or may be he'd agree that there's something fishy about insisting on having citizenship without the duties.

    So its natural for me to see anything that reinforces social ties (contracts?) between foreigners and Zambians as good for Zambia.

    They pay taxes, don't they?
    Their freedom of expression is not restricted (or not anymore than Zambians').
    What kind of "plus" will come from citizenship?

    By the way, have you tried this test? My political compass!
Mrk is in your camp am sure....lol!


    Here. Actually he is in my camp. He's a on my left on economic issues (though I'm still on the left) and i'm a bit less authoritarian than he is. That's not surprising either. I know me and MrK agree on a lot of things. Plus, as he pointed out, the test is very US-centric. So there's a lot of stuff about "values" or whatever.
    That said, I'm not surprised by your position either. It's very obvious that you're slightly authoritarian and center-left. But then again, by US standards, center-right european or far right Africans are center-left. And with you being religious and a bit conservative (tell me if I'm wrong), your authoritarianism may have been exagerated.

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  6. Yes, my authoritarian score was slightly exaggerated. I would like to think I am bang on the line or just above, and but a bit more to the right than suggested...thought still slightly left..

    "Or may be he'd agree that there's something fishy about insisting on having citizenship without the duties."

    I agree that expatriates who become Zambians certainly would have to accept that they can no longer avoid paying taxes due to some "double-avoidance" clause. I know the Indians at the moment don't pay anything. if they became Zambians under dual nationality they would clearly have to accept that they must contribute.

    For Zambians abroad, I think that is complicated. Paying taxes when you are not in Zambia is not fair I don't think. Taxes are not a patriotic charge..they are a social contract between the people and government. Though I accept people may differ on that.

    "They pay taxes, don't they?Their freedom of expression is not restricted (or not anymore than Zambians'). What kind of "plus" will come from citizenship?"

    The plus is in social ties. Paying taxes is different from being fully embedded in society.

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  7. Yes, my authoritarian score was slightly exaggerated. I would like to think I am bang on the line or just above

    Then again, when we discuss chiefs, I tend to think it's not that exagerated, lol. I guess it depends on where the line is.

    I agree that expatriates who become Zambians certainly would have to accept that they can no longer avoid paying taxes due to some "double-avoidance" clause. I know the Indians at the moment don't pay anything. if they became Zambians under dual nationality they would clearly have to accept that they must contribute.

    Dual citizenship doesn't cancell "double-avoidance" issues ! When you google dual-citizenship, half of the stuff that comes up is tax related.

    And India doesn't allow dual nationality.

    Furthermore, expatriates are a very very specific case. We're talking about people hired abroad, usually (but not always) by companies established abroad who are dispatched to another country. Legally, their work contract is under the labour laws (and taxes) of the country that hired them. They have a limited time in Zambia and almost never plan on staying (and when they do, their employers try to make them switch to a local contract). There has to be a better way to tax them than giving them citizenship !
    What about creating an "expatriate worker tax" that the companies used them has to pay ?

    For Zambians abroad, I think that is complicated. Paying taxes when you are not in Zambia is not fair I don't think. Taxes are not a patriotic charge..they are a social contract between the people and government. Though I accept people may differ on that.

    Most countries tax residency. The US is the biggest exception. The income tax applies to all citizen, including the ones living abroad (though they deduct taxes paid to government of residency).
    I tend to agree with you. Residency should be the basis.

    The plus is in social ties. Paying taxes is different from being fully embedded in society.

    Citizenship doesn't create social ties. I know a bunch of foreigners (french, lebanese, portugese, russian, malian etc..) in my country and others who got citizenship for convinience (easier to start a business) and none of them feel anymore tied to the country than they were before.
    If anything, they already had roots in those countries through their houses and their businesses and that was why they even cared at all.

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