Analysis: KELVIN MBEWE
JUST like Martin Luther King, I have a dream that Zambia will one day attain its full measure of greatness.
A dream that the challenges the country is facing are just minor setbacks on the road to success.
Some might call this wishful thinking simply because currently the going seems to be tough owing to the recent increase in fuel prices, high demand of power that has led to sharing the little that the country has and other biting situations.
The truth of the matter is that these encounters are not happening for the first time, nor are they only happening in Zambia.
They are not here to stay but to strengthen us in readiness for future trials and perfection.
Even the Bible in the book of James 1:2-4 says: â€œCount it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.â€
Verse four says: â€œAnd let steadfastness have its full effect that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.â€
This is reason enough to understand the challenges that Zambia is facing.
I have had the privilege of travelling to Tunduma and Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, Mchinji and Lilongwe in Malawi, Avondale in Zimbabwe and Katima Mulilo in Namibia.
I have also been to almost all the 10 provinces of this beautiful country, Zambia.
My conclusion after these escapades is that we are all going through almost the same experiences. Itâ€™s only about individual brilliance and hard work.
Some people want to use Government as a scapegoat to their individual problems. I believe that the government can only supplement our efforts and not spoon-feed the masses.
I know some people who drink alcohol the whole day and blame the government for their failed endeavours. Iâ€™m sure we all know such people.
In order for Zambia to sustain development and other achievements registered so far, it calls for hard work and that should start at individual level.
Individuals should ask themselves a question of what contribution they will make in the community in which they are staying.
This will trigger and enhance rapid economic growth of the country.
As a country, we also have to be proud of the good things that we are enjoying rather than concentrating on the negatives.
Let us count our blessings and name them one by one; you will be shocked at what God has done for this great nation.
Critics have their own views and justifications about this, but I donâ€™t think their cons can outweigh the pros that the country has witnessed since time immemorial.
Name-calling and the blame game are retrogressive, itâ€™s better we advise each other where necessary.
We also have to support our leaders who have been given those positions by the Almighty God. They need us as much as we need them.
Back to my earlier statement that Zambia is destined for success.
The biggest advantage that we have in Zambia is peace. I have not been around the world but the few countries where I have been are not as welcoming as Zambia.
We have the heart to embrace locals and foreigners alike and this has sent positive energy into the atmosphere. It is for this reason that despite all the shortcomings of this country we still forge ahead without much struggle.
My recent visit to one southern African country proved otherwise. Many people there are not friendly, especially if you canâ€™t speak their language.
Zambia has vast land and other natural resources such as minerals, forests, water, vegetation, forests, timber, animals, fertile soils, sunlight and much more.
I didnâ€™t see much of these kind of resources in Namibia, Zimbabwe, Tanzania and let alone Malawi.
As for infrastructure development, what I saw in all the countries that I have been to, except Namibia, cannot be compared to Zambia, unless Iâ€™m in need of spectacles.
Back home, significant development has taken place in most of the towns that I have visited.
Chipata is one of those that have developed at a fast pace. Eight years ago I got a job as a radio announcer at a local radio station in the area and my immediate reaction was not to stay more than two years in the place owing to the state of affairs back then.
The area lacked everything from roads to housing infrastructure. I left the area in 2011 and recently went back on national duty.
The place looks better than most towns in Zambia, only an indigenous easterner would understand what I mean. The Great East Road has undergone a total transformation. Investors have flocked to the area, bringing with them shopping malls, hotels, houses and other good-looking structures.
Ndola, Kasama, Livingstone, Choma, Mazabuka, Lusaka and have equally received the attention they deserve in terms of development.
It is for this reason that my feelings get hurt when someone speaks ill of this great nation.
The author is a reporter with Zambia Daily Mail.
Analysis: KELVIN MBEWE