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Thursday, 14 May 2009

Zambia's Leadership Crisis?

Interesting perspectives over at the Transforming Zambian Politics on the current state of Zambian leadership :

"....Our philosophy of political leadership must also change. Those of us outside the established political system must begin finding creative ways of implementing change in our communities through partnerships and the harnessing of the people's hunger for change and turning it into productive energy. As Zambians, we waste a lot of time talking instead of acting. We focus so much on government's ability to change our lives instead of focusing on our own ability to change dire situations in our communities. For example, when rainy season comes, drainage becomes a problem in many communities. Why not get together as a community to clean our surroundings and implement a food for work program. We will be helping to solve 2 problems; the drainage problem and the hunger problem...."
I actually happen to think we don't talk enough, yes we talk but do we communicate? That was a digression,  I certainly share Campbell's  frustration : many of our people tend to see political leadership as the only way to effect change. Although certainly the politics of poverty (herehere ,here and here)play their role (politics is a job like any other and a lucrative one). But that aside even if money was not the issue, the reason people don't get together and take forward these changes that we desire is simply the "coordination" problem coupled with "genovese effect" (we all know poor drainage is costly to our communities in the long term, but we would rather someone else took the pain of sorting it out, rather than bear the cross from the entire community).  Thats why governments exists to eliminate these "market failures". Unfortunately our problem is "government failure"!  

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