SHIKANDA KAWANGA, Livingstone
A SHOW of political might is looming in Livingstone as campaigns for the executive mayoral seat enter the final days with various candidates intensifying their crusades.
With less than a month before the August 11 general elections, all the candidates eyeing the position of executive mayor have stepped up their campaigns with all of them promising to deliver development in Zambiaâ€™s tourist capital.
The race to the Livingstone mayoral seat has attracted five people in the names of retired Captain John Mwamulima who is on self-sponsorship, Edward Ntinda of the Patriotic Front (PF), Fred Chibuye of Rainbow Party, MMDâ€™s Friday Nkonde, and Eugene Mapuwo who is standing on the United Party for National Development (UPND) ticket.
With all candidates expressing confidence of winning the poll, it is entirely up to Livingstone residents to decide who they want to be their first executive mayor come August 11.
Edward Ntinda – PF
A civil engineer who is married and has four children, Mr Ntinda is currently into business and is promising to work on township roads if he is elected executive mayor of Livingstone.
Mr Ntinda, 59, says the council has the machinery that can be used to do the work and all it requires is a vibrant man like himself.
Under his leadership, Mr Ntinda says the local authority will improve street lighting and see to it that there is equitable land distribution among the residents.
â€œAll Zambians are entitled to land,â€ he says.
As executive mayor, Mr Ntinda says he will also facilitate improvement in revenue collection and ensure that land rates are paid monthly so that people can afford to pay them.
Mr Ntinda also plans to improve markets by putting up better shelters.
John Mwamulima – Independent
Captain Mwamulima, 59, is married with nine children. He is a businessman who previously served in the Zambia Air Force from 1984 to1991.
He also served as a UNIP councillor at Livingstone City Council from 1998 to 2001 during which period he was vice chairperson of the planning and development committee of the local authority.
In 2001, Capt. Mwamulima contested the Livingstone parliamentary seat but he lost.
Capt. Mwamulima is pledging to improve the road network if elected as executive mayor of the tourist capital.
He also intends to work on sanitation, which will help increase tourist arrivals.
If he becomes executive mayor, Capt. Mwamulima plans to empower Livingstone residents with businesses.
He says the current situation where Livingstone residents have to travel to neighbouring countries to buy merchandise must be stopped by producing them locally and attracting investors into Zambia.
â€œOnce we have cheaper products in Zambia, we will create jobs for the local people, and the Zambian market will have uniform prices that will compete with those in Namibia, Zimbabwe and Botswana,â€ he says.
Capt. Mwamulima also says he will fight corruption at Livingstone City Council by coming up with strict rules of getting rid of all staff that will be found wanting.
â€œCorrupt officers will have to resign because I will not tolerate such,â€ he says.
Fred Chibuye – Rainbow
At 54, Mr Chibuye is married and has three children. He has a diploma in hotel management and a degree in theology.
Currently a businessman dealing in real estate, Mr Chibuye is promising to look into the land issues by ensuring that there is fair sharing of the resource.
Mr Chibuye plans to fight corruption at the council and revive community halls so that people can participate in the running of the city.
He also intends to come up with various youth recreational facilities to keep young people busy and prevent them from engaging in illicit activities which can ruin their lives.
Friday Nkonde – MMD
A businessman, the 49-year-old Mr Nkonde is married and has five children.
He pledges to ensure that livelihoods for women and youths are improved by helping them form clubs through which they will be empowered with funds to enable to engage in entrepreneurial activities such as block-making and carpentry, among others.
If elected, Mr Nkonde says he will look for funds to build recreational centres so that youths do not engage themselves in unproductive ventures.
Eugene Mapuwo – UPND
The 46-year-old Mr Mapuwo is a businessman who is married and has four children.
The aspiring mayor intends to improve the road network in the entire Livingstone should he be elected as executive mayor.
Mr Mapuwo also plans to ensure that there is proper sanitation in all parts of the tourist capital.
He further intends to improve tourism and revive timber and textile industries in the city.
Mr Mapuwo also says he will make Livingstone a no-crime zone by putting in place strict safety measures which will attract investors to set up businesses in the city.
If elected, he will also work towards revamping several other industries in a bid to restore the economic vibrancy of the city.
â€œI will ensure that I bring in investors that will create better jobs for the local people. I will also lobby for partnerships with Zambians to ensure security in the city,â€ he says.
SHIKANDA KAWANGA, Livingstone