ZAMBIA has been part of the international community’s efforts to drive the development agenda for the benefit of its citizens.
The country was part of the United Nations in coming up with the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) designed to accelerate selected sectors, among them education, health, gender, environment and poverty reduction.
The MDGs have extended through the Sustainable Development Goals Zambia and the UN family agreed at the UN general assembly in 2015.
Through the MDGs and SDGs, Zambia has been thinking global but acting local.
This is seen through the various pronouncements by Government such as the Vision 2030, which seeks to transform the country into a prosperous middle-income country.
Government has crafted the Seventh National Development Plan, which speaks to the SDGs.
The country has almost 12 years to fulfil the ambitious target of attaining the prosperous middle-income status.
Looking at the glaring poverty levels in the country, especially in rural areas, attaining this status appears impossible.
But like Vice-President Inonge Wina said on Friday, the country’s vision of becoming a prosperous middle-income country will only be attained if adequate resources are channelled towards the poor and vulnerable.
The responsibility to care for the needy calls for collective efforts from all stakeholders.
As a country, we should not leave anyone behind in this vision of becoming a middle-income country.
But we have a lot to do.
Among the things that we need includes reducing barriers to local entrepreneurs in as far as business operations are concerned.
It’s very difficult for a Zambian to run a successful business because there are many legal hindrances
The country needs to tap into entrepreneurship, even as cooperatives, as opposed to wanting to be a sole trader all the time.
There is so much we can achieve as groups in business.
In order to run successful cooperatives, we need credible leadership that puts others before self.
Political leadership at all levels should also be selfless and centred on universal access to essential social services such as health and education.
Traditional leadership needs to fall into the Vision 2030 as well. There must be deliberate cooperative policies such as the need for all houses in every village to be made of burnt bricks and have iron roofs, then have them electrified, as a collective village responsibility.
All the people in each village would work together to mould the required bricks for all the houses in that particular village.
We should stop early marriages as a collective responsibility in every village and promoting skills training locally
There are many other viable activities we have to embark on as a nation.
Collectively, let us complement Government’s efforts in providing fresh and clean water, food, medicines and education to the needy.
The PF administration has demonstrated political will by spreading development evenly to all parts of the country.
Infrastructural projects are creating employment and enhancing service delivery, thus contributing towards attaining the prosperous middle-income status.
Working together, we can all migrate to that level of development come 2030.