Editor's Comment

Don’t adopt failures

Zambia's Parliament building.

PRESIDENT Edgar Lungu says Patriotic Front (PF) Members of Parliament should be ready to explain to the electorate what they have individually done to help improve the welfare of their constituents ahead of next year’s general elections.
Certainly time has come for those entrusted with public office at various levels to allow their works to speak for them.
While President Lungu was directing this message to his party lieutenants, this is advice that even those in the opposition should embrace.
Every five years we have many people vying for public office promising the electorate many development projects.
Unfortunately for some, immediately they are elected to public office they disappear only to re-appear in time for another election seeking re-election.
These are the bad eggs that take away from the collective efforts and good image of their political parties.
The head of State could not have put it any better in saying: “When people vote, they expect their lives to be improved and civic leaders should be available to explain their development agenda and achievements. When you vote for leaders, ask them about development.”
As Zambia approaches the end of a five-year term next year, it is the responsibility of all those entrusted with public office to account for their stay in office.
As rightly stated by the President, each individual must showcase what they did and how they improved the lives of people who voted for them into office before they even think of contesting the 2021 elections.
Civic leaders and MPs alike should only consider running for office again if they are convinced that they delivered at individual level.
No-one should hide behind other people’s successes. Each person should be able to point at tangible development projects they have initiated and implemented in their wards or constituencies during their tenure.
Those who have nothing to show should not be considered for adoption in next year’s election because they are liabilities.
Political parties should understand that it is risky to adopt people who have failed to deliver. These are difficult to sell.
It is also unfair to impose leaders who cannot deliver to the expectations of the respective constituents.
This is why President Lungu is saying in 2021 he will ask for better people he can work with.
This is a clear message to non-performers that they do not stand a chance of being adopted in 2021 and they have no-one to blame but themselves.
President Lungu will be doing the party and the country as a whole a disservice to entertain failures.
The head of State has been emphatic from the beginning of the term on the need for MPs and ministers to visit their constituencies and deliver development.
Those who heed the President’s advice should be at ease because they have what to show for their time in office, but for those who decided to ignore the advice, time for reckoning is coming.
No-one should be allowed to ride on the overall achievements of the party. Each individual should instead point out what they contributed to the overall success of the party. Those who fail to point at anything should be replaced with those eager to serve the country.
President Lungu has led by example of what it means to deliver on one’s promises as evidenced by the massive infrastructure development among many other development initiatives.
President Lungu has proved to be a pragmatic leader. He has been on the ground to physically check on projects as opposed to waiting for sugarcoated reports.
If the head of State can go on the ground to check on projects, how much more those at ward and constituency levels?
There are certainly no two ways about it, adoption in 2021 should be based on individual works.



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