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Thursday, 21 July 2011

Who should we vote for in the elections?

Conrad Mbewe has assembled a collection of Reformed pastors to offer opinions. My 'home' pastor in Ndola "Kabwe Kabwe" has this to say :
Voting is all about making choices, sad to say that some people decide on a candidate when they are in the booth and not before the day of elections. The question on who to vote for in this year’s elections, reminds me of the vital question, “How would Jesus vote if He was among us? Ram Gidoomal a Christian British businessman stood for Mayor of London in 2000 and failed to go through, he then wrote a reflective book entitled ‘How would Jesus vote?’ Let me paraphrase some of Gidoomal’s reflections on what to look for in our national leaders in this year’s Presidential and Parliamentary elections. Basically, there are six areas in which we should probe our candidates:


1. How committed are they with issues of social justice, i.e. the injustice and inequality in our society?
2. Issues of respect for human life. Do they respect the sanctity of life and the rest of God’s creation?
3. Are they committed to peace building? How do they handle conflict?
4. Issues of compassion. Are they broken by the levels of poverty and underdevelopment of our communities? Is there any discontentment in them when they see the dehumanizing results of structural sins of selfishness in society?
5. Issues of stewardship. Can we entrust and trust them with the country’s resources and are they accountable?
6. Do they exhibit any professional capacity to bring about empowerment to free people and the nation from archaic living conditions?

All politicians make promises. However, it is important before we consider the promise that we look at the person making the promises. We need to know as much about that candidate as we can and then look at the policy being promised. Can s/he translate it into action?
I couldn't agree more! I would put number 4 on the top of the list! You can read the rest of the contributions here.

9 comments:

  1. Politics is really an imperfect science, the pastors or others can offer their best advice on who to vote for but in the end there is little to predict what or who will be the best. In Zambia's case KK, FJT and Mwanawasa will all deemed to be the ultimate leaders but look how events played out.
    i think and I may be wrong but people's psychic is really the greatest determinant. Find a group of people that have a collective vision of where and how they want their future to be and you will find their voting criteria. The kind of political options before the Zambian electorate speaks to the mindset of the Zambian voter neither words nor coercion can effect a given result just as love is blind so are political preferences, it is what it is! Sata maybe less educated than HH or Prof Chilwa but yet he know how to carry the people's favor so Zambia will get want Zambians want.

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  2. Your assessment is valid.

    I would add that electoral decisions in Zambia are always a collective risk assessment. If a candidate looks like they might win entire groups of people shift in that direction. Due to the nature of politics, people follow the crowd for safety. So you will find that voting patterns inevitably are provincial.

    In terns of Mr Sata - he has done extremely well since the collapse of the Pact. I think it is obvious from the MMD's delay in announcing the date and shortening the campaign period to less than two months that they sense the inevitable.

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  3. What of the crowds of people in Southern, N.W, Western Province, Central, Eastern Provinces who are determined not to vote for Sata? Which crowds will prove greater (Majority)? The crowds of preference are always in the majority.

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  4. Is it not interesting, in view of the above, that 'we', 'they' and such other pronouns become sanctuaries of repose, pretending to offer truly unbiased opinions, on behalf of the 'majority'. At the end of the day, 'the majority' is simply and truly the wishful preference of the advocate, especially so in our current political climate.

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  5. I think it's better to see those who seek to engage in public disclosure, of the kind we are engaged in now, not so much as seeking to guide the masses, but rather as offering mediums for which the masses can be better informed and come to their own conclusions.

    As Conrad Mbewe noted on his blog, it is not our job to tell people who to vote for but we have an obligation to tell the truth. To point out injustice where it exists. To stand for truth where lies pervade.

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  6. 'Propanganda based on innocent sincerity or mistaken belief'

    Often propaganda hides behind the veil of innocent truth. Hitler had followers who sincerely believed the NAZI cause, prepared to die for the same.

    Truth in Politics nay relative truth. In religion, yes, absolute truth can be talked about.

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  7. Whats that I hear about a BBC reality TV show to help Zambian prostitutes get husbands?

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  8. times are changing and the zambian people are asking real questions.but i things we have reached a time when people should be voting for ideas not people. a guy who come and promises everything but has no plan to show for it should not be voted for. voting for names has made us loose out for real change and we have settled for the some of the chaps mentioned above.
    so let vote for the ideas we want not just known guys with no plan.
    lastly because the guys offering themselves have no clear ideas many of us are still undecided contrary to popular belief and hence the races remains open

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  9. The partiality exhibited by the public media is robbing the people of critical information that is required for people to make informed choices.

    I feel focusing on only the positive achievements of the incumbent breeds suspicion in the minds of many people. It is not possible for a political system to be perfect and when the media gathers around a candidate to propel his image without pointing out any weaknesses they end up being unbelievable. Any one who points out SATA's strengths while mentioning a few weaknesses is more likely to convey his message than one who sticks to either the positives or negatives only. In this vain I PERSONALLY enjoy reading the 2 recent publications of the Zambian Watchdog and following this site as opposed to reading biased articles from some media.

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