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Tuesday, 6 July 2010

The most inspirational speech by a Zambian politician?

"For as long as I can remember, it has become fashionable in our young country to accept that politics do not deliver sustainably and lack imagination; the notion that hard work doesn’t pay; the death of principled positions; the triumph of neoclassical economics which are less understood even by their proponents; and the politics of non-issues which are devoid of any discernable ideological position. We continue to waste time and resources on non-issues. Put crudely, it is the degrading view gaining ground in our nation that says “forget the ethics and morals, everything goes, the end justifies the means”; and also that “everything is up for sale at the right price”. In Solwezi, however, the concept of the highest bidder secures clearly failed. Politics on this argument becomes little more than theatre—a poorly staged public performance necessary to convince the electorate that the country is moving, or needs a new management".

"I believe that there remains a fundamental need for us as a people of Zambia to clearly define and articulate our national interests that transcend party affiliations. Under girding such national interests should be ethical and moral issues that include setting for ourselves to honor virtues of hard work, honest, trustworthiness and decency".

"Parties devoid of any ideological stand (and by ideology we mean a well thought-out political and economic system) will tend to react to issues; are caught unawares by the obvious and offer no solutions to the complex challenges of the 21st century. If Zambia must survive in this century, we need new thinking"

"We have allowed ourselves to assume mental dwarfism that refuses to think critically and beyond our narrow self interests. We are content to visit political Tuntembas translated as tea cants or prefabricated sheet corner stores when we can get more from political malls with their polished knowledge. To get back to that place requires leadership—leadership that the current government appears demonstrably incapable of providing. Our future challenge is to build across this nation a robust domestic constituency in support of Zambia's future international engagement, one that will not be neglected by inferiority complex".
Excerpts from a remarkable speech delivered on 19th November 2009, Hon Watson K. Lumba MP in Parliament when was welcomed as the newly elected Solwezi Member of Parliament. (HT: Salt and Light Zambia).

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