Category Archives: Zambian Law

No Creativity, No Imagination: My reflections on President Lungu’s cabinet

E. Munshya, LLB (Hons), M.Div.

President Lungu

President Lungu

For someone who took almost three weeks to announce the cabinet, it is rather surprising that this cabinet has very few surprises. Unprecedented in the history of our nation, Edgar Lungu becomes the first president to take 19 days to announce a full cabinet. What is equally unusual with Lungu is the fact that by the time he was taking his oath of office, he had already worked for about three years as a minister and as a Member of Parliament. So Edgar Lungu was much more familiar with more MPs than any of the previous presidents. Kenneth Kaunda had known and personally worked with most of the people he appointed as ministers in 1964, but he never took long to identify a cabinet. Chiluba had a fleeting personal knowledge of the MPs, and yet he appointed cabinet just a day after he assumed power. Mwanawasa appointed a full cabinet within days. He most certainly retained Chiluba’s ministers, but added a few individuals here and there. Rupiah Banda in 2008 also kept Mwanawasa’s cabinet but appointed a full cabinet just days after taking the oath. President Sata took slightly a week to form his team.

We can only speculate as to why Lungu took 19 days to form his full team. But looking at the ministers, it becomes quite apparent that the team offers nothing new. With the exception of a few faces, this team remains hugely uneventful.

Emmanuel Mwamba

Emmanuel Mwamba

By far, the most daring of these appointments is Chishimba Kambwili as Minister of Information. Kambwili has not fared very well in ministries that have to do with tact and diplomacy. His first job as Minister of Foreign Affairs in 2011 ended in disaster. His stint at Labour was equally uninspiring. During the run up to the elections late last-year, Kambwili stormed ZNBC studios to protest ZNBC’s editorial choice. This was when Kambwili was Team Guy Scott and not Team Edgar Lungu. It is quite surprising that President Lungu has found Kambwili suitable to take over this portfolio. The selection of Kambwili though might be sending a message that Lungu is willing to put a fighter at information who will dictate news and information for the 2016 election cycle. Kambwili has several strengths. He is a great organizer, having created the Team7500, which served as his own campaign team for Lungu in the just ended election. In addition, Kambwili has turned out to be good with social media. In fact, he used his page on Facebook to organize this Team7500. For sure, both the PF and its government would do with a good social media strategy in this age where news is being dictated by likes, tweets, hashtags and shares.

Vincent Mwale - Youth and Sport

Vincent Mwale – Youth and Sport

Kambwili’s appointment is also quite ironic. During the PF squabbles, Kambwili was quite outspoken about his disapproval of Lungu and his team. In fact, the storming of ZNBC happened during that same time. On the other side of Team Lungu was Emmanuel Mwamba, a social media and public relations guru who castigated Kambwili for intimidating journalists at ZNBC. Many expected Mwamba to play some role in Lungu’s government with regard to information, news, or public relations. It is ironic that Lungu has completely sidelined Mwamba, but goes to appoint Kambwili as Information minister. This is the same Kambwili whose behavior towards journalists was anathema to Lungu’s PR team led by Mwamba.

Vincent Mwale has been a very consistent figure in MMD politics. It is rather startling that it has taken him over a decade to be recognised as Cabinet Minister material. He has been an MP under four of Zambia’s six presidents. It has taken Lungu to recognize his leadership abilities by appointing him Minister of Youth and Sport. This is quite a great choice. I just hope that Mwale will take his zeal to cabinet just like he worked tirelessly as chair of the public accounts committee of Zambia’s parliament.

Given Lubinda was almost certainly going to bounce back. As a cunning politician, he changed sides quickly when it became apparent that Lungu was going to be the PF’s nominee. He campaigned vigorously for Lungu and he has been rewarded with a strategic portfolio – Agriculture. He takes over from one of the most inefficient ministers in the history of Zambia. Lungu has done well to do away with Wilbur Simuusa.

Michael Kaingu has been appointed Minister of Education. In 2011 Sata merged this portfolio with higher education, science and vocational training. As such, it is a huge responsibility for Kaingu. This gentleman seems to be a hard worker and he is likely to do well at education. However, his role in the MMD squabbles creates a doubt in my mind as to his judgment and character.

Lungu stated at one point that he was going to split some ministries. It seems he has backpedaled. It doesn’t make sense to have one minister take care of Works, Supply, Communications and Transport. This ministry needed to be split. I just hope that the President will go ahead with plans and streamline this ministry. Yamfwa Mukanga is a good choice for this portfolio. Education, higher education, vocational training, and science is one other ministry that needs splitting.

The following portfolios should be merged: Gender, Traditional Affairs and Community Development. They take up too much space and could be better streamlined. From the address of President Lungu it appears Professor Nkandu Luo might not take up the Gender portfolio. If she declines, it will mark a remarkable fall for a woman who was the rising star in the PF government. Her fight with Bashi Lubemba has had an effect on her plummeting relevance.

This cabinet has six women out of 21. This makes it one of the least gender-balanced cabinets in our history. It is remarkable though that the Vice-President is a woman. It has about 9 Bemba-speaking members. This makes the Bemba-block the most powerful chunk in the cabinet. It has four Easterners and three from Barotseland. Even though it has about 50% Bemba representation, I have no issues with its tribal composition. The PF remains primarily a Bemba-speaking party.

Munshya wa Munshya

Munshya wa Munshya

Lungu has taken a very comfortable posture. He has not stretched nor challenged himself. He is a lawyer and it seems this has come through the choice of cabinet, bizarrely risk averse. He has fired almost all of the ministers that did not support him during the PF squabbles. He has taken an adversarial stand. This is a bit concerning to me. As president, Lungu needed to appear like the big man that he is by absorbing a few of the ministers from the camp that did not support him. It is woeful that Kapeya, Chenda, Simuusa and Sichinga have not been retained. We know Lungu is the boss, but appointing an “adversary” would have shown his true greatness. For now, Lungu took 19 days to come up with a cabinet that lacks both imagination and ingenuity. But it is too early to tell how this team will perform. I wish them all the best.

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Suggested Citation: Munshya, E. (2015). “No Creativity, No Imagination: My reflections on President Lungu’s cabinet.” Elias Munshya Blog (www.eliasmunshya.org). 12 February 2015

Eliasmunshya.org projects that Lungu wins Zambian elections: 784,263 for EL and 764,724 for HH

  • If you have to copy this table, please make an appropriate acknowledgement of the source. Just cite www.eliasmunshya.org and we will be happy.
  • We do not guarantee the accuracy of these numbers.
  • Final and official numbers will come from the Electoral Commission of Zambia. Some numbers may not be final for constituencies.
  • Use with caution. We are not responsible for your BP, heart attack or anything like that arising out of the use of these numbers.
  • Remember these are projections only, and more accurate numbers will come from the ECZ.
PF UPND
Chisamba Central 2,596 6,597
Chitambo Central 2,534 384
Kapiri Mposhi Central 7,869 8,160
Katuba Central 2,399 6,537
Keembe Central 2,586 9,043
Mkushi North Central 4,153 2,577
Mkushi South Central 2,182 1,734
Muchinga Central 1,384 456
Mumbwa Central 1,392 7,597
Mwembeshi Central 814 7,975
Serenje Central 3,940 839
Bwacha Central 8,182 2,682
Nangoma Central 542 7,783
Kabwe Central Central 11,763 4,957
 eliasmunshya.org 52,336 67,321
Bwana Mkubwa Copperbelt 11,294 3,038
Chifubu Copperbelt 11,817 3,422
Chililabombwe Copperbelt 10,126 3,047
Chimwemwe Copperbelt 15,214 3,499
Chingola Copperbelt 11,750 5,846
Kabushi Copperbelt 12,475 2,762
Kafulafuta Copperbelt 2,241 1,961
Kamfinsa Copperbelt 8,983 2,381
Kantanshi Copperbelt 8,439 1,615
Kwacha Copperbelt 14,940 4,027
Luanshya Copperbelt 9,765 3,145
Kalulushi Copperbelt 11,371 4,040
Masaiti Copperbelt 2,565 3,461
Mpongwe Copperbelt 2,751 1,690
Mufulira Copperbelt 6,755 1,690
Nchanga Copperbelt 11,388 2,666
Ndola Central Copperbelt 12,610 4,662
Nkana Copperbelt 11,608 2,829
Wusakile Copperbelt 11,551 1,969
Roan Copperbelt 7,782 2,445
Lufwanyama Copperbelt 2,270 3,457
Kankoyo Copperbelt 5,226 1,271
 eliasmunshya.org 202,921 64,923
Chadiza Eastern Province 2,927 2,391
Chipangali Eastern Province 4,673 1,750
Chasefu Eastern Province 5,001 1,974
Chipata Central Eastern Province 10,883 3,228
Chama North Eastern Province 3,615 676
Kapoche Eastern Province 4,713 1,115
Kasenengwa Eastern Province 5,336 2,616
Luangeni Eastern Province 5,151 1,716
Lumezi Eastern Province 3,056 1,116
Lundazi Eastern Province 8,779 2,972
Malambo Eastern Province 4,534 2,538
Mkaika Eastern Province 4,051 2,285
Msanzala Eastern Province 3,218 697
Nyimba Eastern Province 2,238 830
Petauke Central Eastern Province 10,346 1,202
Sinda Eastern Province 2,509 3,142
Vubwi Eastern Province 2,111 1,526
Chama South Eastern Province 2,801 908
Milanzi Eastern Province 3,441 1,471
 eliasmunshya.org 89,383 34,153
Bahati Luapula Province 7,163 876
Bangweulu Luapula Province 7,472 848
Chembe Luapula Province 2,597 354
Chiengi Luapula Province 4,773 1,445
Chifunabuli Luapula Province 7,736 1,210
Nchelenge Luapula Province 9,112 952
Chipili Luapula Province 5,689 267
Kawambwa Luapula Province 5,233 374
Luapula Luapula Province 3,527 326
Mambilima Luapula Province 3,714 568
Mansa Central Luapula Province 10,631 1,278
Mwense Luapula Province 5,340 1,055
Pambashe Luapula Province 3,854 519
Mwansabombwe Luapula Province 4,548 421
 eliasmunshya.org 81,389 10,493
Kafue Lusaka Province 7,758 8,108
Feira Lusaka Province 3,332 751
Chilanga Lusaka Province 4,376 6,102
Chongwe Lusaka Province 5,773 7,252
Rufunsa Lusaka Province 1,819 2,146
Chawama Lusaka Province 13,469 6,261
Kabwata Lusaka Province 19,704 10,069
Kanyama Lusaka Province 13,034 12,805
Lusaka Central Lusaka Province 15,077 9,190
Mandevu Lusaka Province 29,244 9,844
Matero Lusaka Province 28,056 9,127
Munali Lusaka Province 27,296 14,366
 eliasmunshya.org 168,938 96,021
Chilubi Northern Province 8,100 2,400
Chinsali Northern Province 8,622 381
Isoka East Northern Province 4,614 992
Isoka West Northern Province 5,114 1,031
Kanchibiya Northern Province 4,527 488
Kaputa Northern Province 4,210 2,110
Kasama Northern Province 11,544 3,465
Lubansenshi Northern Province 5,216 939
Lukashya Northern Province 8,485 1,915
Lunte Northern Province 4,172 1,489
Lupososhi Northern Province 7,633 1,147
Malole Northern Province 13,466 1,873
Mbala Northern Province 6,727 1,430
Mfuwe Northern Province 3,102 144
Mporokoso Northern Province 4,315 683
Mpulungu Northern Province 8,151 2,015
Nakonde Northern Province 6,693 1,370
Senga Hill Northern Province 5,537 1,092
Shiwa Ng’andu Northern Province 6,228 222
Chimbamilonga Northern Province 4,175 1,533
Mpika Central Northern Province 7,204 572
 eliasmunshya.org 137,835 27,291
Chavuma North-Western 792 4,898
Kabompo East North-Western 826 6,739
Kabompo West North-Western 520 6,307
Mufumbwe North-Western 1,200 8,400
Mwinilunga East North-Western 537 6,515
Mwinilunga West North-Western 822 19,152
Solwezi Central North-Western 4,219 14,737
Solwezi East North-Western 597 2,584
Solwezi West North-Western 618 9,312
Zambezi East North-Western 900 8,333
Zambezi West North-Western 888 1,600
Kasempa North-Western 622 9,486
 eliasmunshya.org 12,541 98,063
Bweengwa Southern Province 105 12,593
Chikankata Southern Province 471 12,457
Choma Southern Province 2,139 21,921
Dundumwenzi Southern Province 83 14,181
Gwembe Southern Province 249 10,960
Itezhi-Tezhi Southern Province 788 7,069
Kalomo Central Southern Province 662 17,961
Mapatizya Southern Province 357 13,874
Katombola Southern Province 466 15,025
Livingstone Southern Province 8,352 19,125
Magoye Southern Province 428 11,734
Mazabuka Central Southern Province 3,092 14,801
Mbabala Southern Province 128 13,629
Monze Southern Province 1,097 21,385
Moomba Southern Province 100 8,276
Namwala Southern Province 440 17,151
Pemba Southern Province 203 13,338
Siavonga Southern Province 1,361 12,817
Sinazongwe Southern Province 1,103 17,942
 eliasmunshya.org 21,624 276,239
Kalabo Central Western Province 1,271 6,495
Kaoma Central Western Province 912 4,886
Liuwa Western Province 528 4,685
Luampa Western Province 1,449 5,251
Luena Western Province 326 3,044
Lukulu West Western Province 876 7,163
Mongu Central Western Province 1,959 11,483
Nalikwanda Western Province 445 4,591
Nalolo Western Province 1,536 5,069
Senanga Western Province 754 5,861
Sesheke Western Province 566 5,103
Sikongo Western Province 1,207 4,194
Sinjembela Western Province 1,378 6,389
Mwandi Western Province 596 2,989
Lukulu East Western Province 1,293 5,708
Mulobezi Western Province 1,063 3,517
Mangango Western Province 1,137 3,792
 eliasmunshya.org 17,296 90,220
TOTAL 784,263 764,724
Difference 19,539

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Munshya wa Munshya

Munshya wa Munshya

Video

For Tuesday’s election in Zambia, here is my endorsement

Don’t Kill, Just Kiss: What cadres can learn from Zambian politicians about love, hate and forgiveness

E. Munshya, LLB (Hons), M.Div.

President Kenneth Kaunda

President Kenneth Kaunda

The election is drawing very near. Politicians are busy pounding on doors and flying their helicopters. Lungu has been soaring from Chinsali to Mpulungu, and from there to Katete. Hichilema has also been taking provinces by storm. As the campaign intensifies, so has the alignment and realignment of endorsements. What is actually fascinating is how quickly politicians endorse each other and change their political affiliation. Looking at Lungu’s campaign team today, you would wonder whether this is the same PF team Sata left behind. Additionally, when you look at Hichilema’s team you would equally wonder whether UPND has suddenly become PF or MMD. Politicians that were insulting each other just a few months ago are now realigned and they are best of buddies. I am quite surprised at our politicians’ ability to forgive each other and tolerate each other when seeking political support from one another. In a sense, their sense of forgiveness and their lack of vindictiveness should be a model for all cadres in Zambia.

It is quite strange though that, while politicians forgive each other and take each other for a drink, it is usually cadres who suffer the most bitterness. Cadres are busy insulting each other and killing one another for the support of the same politicians who are enemies today and yet close friends tomorrow. I am appealing to cadres all over Zambia, to desist from victimizing each other and to stop fighting each other because it really is not worth it. Politicians are not values worth fighting for. They change, make up, and then kiss each other while cadres fight and kill each other. It is time for Zambian political cadres to stop the killing and start the kissing. By using the word “killing”, I am really exaggerating it. Cadres are not literally killing one another, but they are fighting nevertheless. That fighting must stop and must be replaced forthwith with kissing. Let Zambian cadres belonging to different political parties dance together and kiss each other. Let them not be used by politicians for politicians themselves have no tangible vertebrae to stand on the very principles that these cadres seem to be fighting over.

Edgar Chagwa Lungu

Edgar Chagwa Lungu

Who on earth ever thought that Geoffrey Bwalya Mwamba would one day become team Hakainde Hichilema? Isn’t this the same GBM who in Mazabuka stated publicly on radio that he had information that a named opposition leader (read HH here) had given money to retired soldiers to assassinate President Michael Sata? To make this even more bizarre, GBM further claimed that police was actively investigating this matter. When GBM was making this claim, he was our country’s minister of defence – a defacto number three in our cabinet hierarchy. Come 2015, this very guy who accused HH of such a heinous crime has changed colours to call HH “a great leader with common interests”. HH has embraced GBM and is using him a great deal in the campaigns in Mporokoso, Kasama and some other parts of Bemba lands. If HH can so easily forgive and make up with GBM, why on earth should cadres be fighting over HH or GBM or is it over PF and UPND?

Frederick Chiluba had in 2001 dribbled Michael Sata in the politics of presidential succession. The fallout was so acrimonious that Sata went to form his own party that almost instantaneously became a threat to Chiluba’s MMD in both Luapula and Northern provinces. After Chiluba’s own personal fallout with President Levy Mwanawasa, he decided to burry the hatchet with Sata and the two became friends again. Chiluba offered support to Sata’s bid for the presidency in 2006. What cadres thought were enemies had chosen to forgive each other and move on for the good of their political interests. After the death of Levy Mwanawasa, Chiluba dribbled Sata again by switching support to one Rupiah Banda in 2008. Essentially, Chiluba had gone back to support Mwanawasa’s Vice-President who had been persecuting him. Talk of forgiveness or is it opportunism. While this went on, it was ridiculous that cadres continued fighting between Chiluba’s supporters and Sata’s supporters. At the funeral of Lemmy Chipili, Chiluba told PF supporters, “there are no permanent enemies in politics only permanent interests.” He was right, there is no reason for cadres to continue fighting when politicians can change their friends overnight or as soon as it suits them.

Rupiah Banda’s 2015 endorsement of the Patriotic Front candidate Edgar Lungu should not come as a surprise too. Whatever the politics behind the gesture, it should tell cadres something when they see former political enemies embracing each other. Imagine, how Lungu is simpering for Banda’s attention. Wasn’t this same Lungu who as minister of home affairs was as vocal in threatening to arrest this Banda? He was the enemy then, but now the two gentlemen are claiming to be “the leaders uniting for a united Zambia”. They have kissed. Many cadres fought each other over Banda and PF. Some may have even assaulted each other. But that was then. By showing pretended forgiveness now, these two leaders show how ridiculous it was for the cadres to fight each other those years back. Politicians are not worth any Zambian’s blood!

The Cobra who charmed a nation

The Cobra who charmed a nation

We have heard that in Mongu, cadres were fighting. For a while social media had reported incorrectly that a UPND cadre had been killed. We urge cadres to stop killing each other and kiss each other instead. HH or Lungu are not worth killing another. Why should a Lozi in Mongu kill another Lozi in Mongu over the support of HH or Lungu who can get together and reconcile in no time if politics suit them? In Shiwang’andu, cadres descended on a helicopter carrying Maureen Mwanawasa and Mutale Nalumango. The duo had gone to the PF stronghold to drum up support for Hakainde Hichilema. I wonder why cadres should allow themselves to be used in this manner. Don’t they realise that if UPND formed government this month, the same Hon. Kampyongo could just change sides, get forgiven by Maureen Mwanawasa, and then get a ministerial post from Hakainde Hichilema? Where would that leave the warring cadres? Cadres must stop the killing, and instead start kissing one another.

Chikokoshi

Chikokoshi

We all have had the fair share of insults from supporters of some politicians. I have decided not to hate or insult another for holding views different from my own. After all is said and done, we will all come together as one huge Zambian family, make up and kiss each other again. Why then should I hate another Zambian? Is it because of Lungu or Hichilema or Mumba? Bacepa sana, umuto walupwa tawitika. We shouldn’t sacrifice the familial ties of our Zambian commonwealth at the altar of wielding pangas for any political leader. It is not just worth it. Instead of hate, I am urging all to adopt the mantra of politicians by embracing all when it suits their politics. And our politics dictate that there is only “One Zambia” and “One Nation”. As such, let us put away those pangas and those swords!

“Ifintu ni Inonge”: The making of the Edgar Lungu candidacy

E. Munshya, LLB (Hons), M.Div.

It is November 30 2014. Delegates have gathered at Mulungushi Rock of Authority in Kabwe. The Patriotic Front is supposed to be having its Extra-ordinary conference. The acting president of the Patriotic Front, Guy Scott, called the conference, but for some reasons best known to himself he has decided not to attend the conference. He is not prepared to officially open it. As the delegates gather and wait for the official opening, it becomes apparent that their president would not show up. In fact, he would not even come near the venue of the conference.

Then enters Inonge Wina, the chairperson of the Patriotic Front. She ambles to the platform at Mulungushi and makes an announcement. She is calling the meeting to order. In spite of the absence of Guy Scott, the general conference must go on. She mentions that she had been in a meeting with Guy Scott and it seems like he would not be attending the conference. However, PF must move on to select a leader to succeed President Sata.

Wina enjoys reading, gardening and cooking. She holds a degree in history and sociology. She was the first CEO of the Young Women Christian Association (YWCA) shortly after independence. She has worked in the government as a civil servant and as a politician. As a passionate women’s rights advocate she volunteered her time on various boards. In 1996 she was elected national chairperson for the NGOCC, an alliance of civil society organisations. Her active political involvement started with the United Liberal Party in 2006. After winning the Nalolo seat in 2011, she was appointed to cabinet in the new government.

In making that announcement in Kabwe, Wina brought to culmination a whole month of speculation and crisis within PF. She had made it very clear, that as Chairperson of the Patriotic Front, she was not going to be intimidated in the discharge of her duties by Guy Scott or anyone acting on his behalf. By standing up to power, Mrs. Wina had drawn upon the inspiration garnered from her own lifetime. Born in 1941 at Suibumbu Village in Senanga, she had served in civil society promoting gender equality and advocating for women’s rights. For her, resolving the crises in the Patriotic Front was just one of those duties in her life.

Ifintu ni Inonge

Ifintu ni Inonge

At first, she appeared to have been a neutral arbiter of conflicts beginning to surface just after the passing of President Sata. The main players in the conflict were Guy Scott on one side and Edgar Lungu on the other. She appears to have been quietly trying to have these two camps iron-out their own differences outside the glare of the public. But Scott’s infamous act to fire Lungu as Secretary General before President Sata was even laid to rest, rubbed many PF stalwarts the wrong way. As a peacemaker, that she is, she joined several PF leaders to have Scott rescind his decision to fire Edgar. To his credit Scott reversed his decision. Relations in the PF then went from bad to worse. It seemed that most of the MCCs had picked their side. They wanted Lungu. Most of PF MPs as well had decided to back Lungu for the presidency. On the other hand, Scott visibly did not seem to like Lungu. But in spite of Scott’s clear contempt for Lungu, it appears like there was consensus in the central committee, in cabinet and among PF parliamentary caucus that Edgar was going to be the PF candidate.

Inonge Wina

Inonge Wina

With the worsening relations within the PF, it was clear that resolving the conflict required some courageous leadership. It was at this juncture that Inonge’s guidance was going to be evident. She determined that the best way to resolve these problems was to give people what they wanted. She was not going to play neutral anymore. She had taken time to listen to the MCCs, to the MPs, and to the cabinet members. Consensus seems to have gone towards Edgar Lungu and she seems to have decided to make that happen. In many ways, therefore, she chose Edgar Lungu and she was going to do all that she could do to have the PF pick the candidate that consensus seems to have settled for. It also seemed clear that in spite of the emerging consensus, it was only Guy Scott and a few of his colleagues that did not want Lungu. Scott was going to do everything in his power to block Lungu. But doing so would not come without cost to the Patriotic Front. It is this cost, that Inonge wanted to avoid. And so the battleground was marked and the swords were drawn, Inonge Wina had picked a side and she was going to fight to the finish.

Consistent with Guy Scott’s reactionary and clueless leadership, when he noticed that Inonge had taken sides, he decided to drop her from PF. She responded with the bulk of MCCs to suspend Scott. Until that time, the pro-Lungu MCCs had lacked a credible spokesperson. All that changed when she emerged as the spokesperson for them. She brought credibility and integrity. The more Scott reacted against her, the more unreasonable he appeared. When on 30 November 2014, she stood at that platform to call the conference to order, it was all clear that Lungu was going to be elected. If PF stalwarts had picked Edgar, it was just natural for her to be the facilitator of that process rather than being the hindrance to it.

When later, in December she was asked about what had actually transpired at Kabwe, her answer was to the effect that she decided to go on with the meeting because she was concerned about the ruling party supporters who had travelled long distances to come and attend the meeting. She did not want to disappoint them. She wanted to have them go back having elected their leader. And so it was her pragmatism that finally won the day. Zambia needs pragmatic leaders like her.

Guy Lindsay Scott of Zambia

Guy Lindsay Scott of Zambia

After the election of Edgar Lungu, Scott proved that he still had some fight in him. He went ahead and conducted a fresh accreditation process and held another conference on Monday, December 1. But as far as Wina was concerned, the PF conference had already elected Lungu. What Scott was doing according to her, was illegal. She decided to go to court to compel Scott to not go ahead with his conference. Having obtained the injunction against the Monday meeting, Inonge Wina addressed the press with new PF president Edgar Lungu and presented to him the party’s adoption certificate. The work she had started was going to be brought to completion. At that same meeting, Lungu fired Bridget Attanga as Secretary General of the Party and replaced her with Davies Chama. This is perhaps one of the most significant tactical decisions that would prove decisive in giving Lungu the PF presidency.

Edgar’s route to the PF presidency has been fraught with great difficulties. Without the resolute leadership of one Inonge Wina, it could have been even more challenging. Lungu won because Wina did all she could to have him become the candidate. A president Edgar Lungu should look no further than Inonge for the choice of our country’s vice-president should he win in January. Inonge Wina has really earned her stripes. Vice-President Inonge Wina has a good ring to it. Ifintu ni Inonge.

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Suggested citation:

Munshya, E. (2014). After Sata: Inonge Wina and the making of the Edgar Lungu candidacy. Elias Munshya Blog. http://www.eliasmunshya.org, 30 December 2014

Guy Scott must resign: Here is why

E. Munshya, LLB (Hons), M.Div.

 There is no legal framework upon which cabinet could fire Guy Lindsay Scott as Acting President of the Republic of Zambia. Guy Scott can only be fired if a question about his mental capacity or physical capability has arisen. However, as a people, we are perfectly in order to request that Scott recuses himself from acting as executive head of our republic considering how he has bizarrely failed to unite his party and the nation with it. Political settlements are a legitimate part of governance. Zambia is neither a “legalcracy” nor is it a “technocracy”, but a “democracy”. Politicians should be able to talk to one other, pressure each other and, within limits of the law, make deals for the good of the country. It is in this vein that we should welcome the decision by cabinet ministers to try and negotiate for an exit strategy for Guy Lindsay Scott.

Guy Lindsay Scott of Zambia

Guy Scott of Zambia

I am asking Scott to resign on the basis that he has failed to provide leadership to our country. Scott has sabotaged the ruling Patriotic Front and with that has also sabotaged good order for our government. Some of our people are downplaying the significance of the wrangles in the ruling party. I am of the view that wrangles in the PF do have national security implications. We cannot just treat the PF as any other club. It is a party in government. As such, it is important to know that what happens in the PF could potentially affect the good order of our nation. Scott has failed to provide leadership in his party and this will spillover to the nation. How could Scott claim to preside over millions of Zambians, if he cannot preside over a simple affair of leadership selection in his own party?

Some are arguing that it is the ministers who should resign and not Scott. This argument is very laughable. Scott tried to fire Lungu while Sata’s body was still lying in state. This backfired upon him. He had offended the good sense of Zambian tradition. We gave him a benefit of doubt. We hoped that he would come around. And then the inevitable followed. He lost nearly all the PF’s Members of the Central Committee. Then he lost support for the PF ordinary members who went to Kabwe and elected Edgar. He also lost support of the PF parliamentary caucus. Scott has now lost support of cabinet. How does a guy continue to preside over national affairs when he has no moral authority?

I am aware though that the opposition parties are in support of Guy Scott. This is understandable. But the opposition needs to be cautioned that supporting Scott in his rampage to sabotage the Patriotic Front is insincere and could plunge our peaceful nation into chaos. Scott should not think that our country would go to elections without PF. It is ridiculous to exclude the PF in the elections just as it would be ridiculous to exclude any other party from participation in elections. This is why Scott’s letter to the Electoral Commission of Zambia and to the Chief Justice asking her not to receive Lungu was in bad taste. It was an assault on democracy. It was an act that has the potential to inflame tensions in the nation. It was a provocative act. Scott should go ahead and hate Lungu all he wants, but in so doing, he should not mortgage the good peace we have enjoyed since independence.

The signs were all clear for all to see. It was only Scott who was blind to this reality. Lungu may have his own weaknesses and he definitely has questions to answer to the people. Nevertheless, after the passing of President Sata, MCCs, MPs, and several cabinet members rallied behind the leadership of Lungu. Clearly, had Scott been a good leader and a good reader of national moods he should have sensed that. But instead of facilitating a fair process for the adoption of a candidate, Scott went on create chaos and mayhem all aimed at frustrating Edgar Lungu. And at whose expense? At the expense of the nation’s peace and good order? Scott cannot make choices for the Zambian people. Zambians will elect a leader of their choice on 20 January 2015. We do not need Guy Scott to tell us why Lungu or HH are preferred candidates. We can figure that out on our own. Scott though has a duty to be sensible and reasonable so that he doesn’t cause unnecessary chaos inspired by his diabolical disgust for Lungu.

Guy Lindsay Scott

Guy Lindsay Scott

Scott is now changing stories. He is claiming that all of his cabinet colleagues are on him because he has refused to abuse government resources for campaigns. I should reluctantly state this to Scott: “Kabepeniko bambi.” Scott is not acting this way because he wants to preserve government resources. Scott is behaving this way because, in spite of repeated indication from the Patriotic Front, he has chosen to sabotage Lungu’s candidature for reasons best known to himself. This is ridiculous. A presidential transition is a very delicate time and moment. We do not need sabotage but unity. To claim that ministers should not use their government vehicles is not only silly but also laughable. During by-elections ministers do use their government vehicles to campaign. Why should that be different now? Wasn’t Scott using state resources when he campaigned in the Zambezi by-elections? What about during the Livingstone by-elections didn’t Scott and Sata’s ministers use their official vehicles? What has changed now? Perhaps, what has changed is Scott’s desire to block Lungu at any cost. Scott should know that it is only the people of Zambia who can stop Lungu. Come 20 January 2015, the people will decide. Lungu could go ahead and use his government car. But the ultimate decision remains with the people on 20 January 2015. Scott should not play with the minds of people like “utwaice”. We have issues with theft, corruption and nepotism. For him to inject it while he fights a senseless war in PF is in bad taste.

In 2011, Rupiah had all the cars and the cash. And what happened in the elections? He was don’t kubebad. We Zambians have this matter in total control. Scott should not use legitimate concerns as a façade to hide his own contempt for a leader the PF has chosen for itself.

Munshya wa Munshya

Munshya wa Munshya

Scott has no confidence of the PF’s MCCs. He has no confidence of members of cabinet. He has no confidence of the ruling party’s parliamentary caucus. He has lost control of the ruling party. This makes him a ruler with legal power, but no political or moral authority.

The only confidence he seems to have at the moment is from opposition parties. And that, by itself, speaks volumes of why he is giving us so much drama. Scott should save us the drama and resign. If not, he should then lead us peacefully so that we can subject both Lungu and Hakainde to the will of the Zambian voter.

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Suggested citation:

Munshya, Elias (2014). Guy Scott must resign: Here is why. Elias Munshya blog. (www.eliasmunshya.org). 18 December 2014

Hakainde Hichilema, Edgar Lungu and the Politics of Contrasts and Comparisons

E. Munshya, LLB (Hons), M.Div.

The campaign time has come in earnest. It seems all the parties now have a general idea of who is going to be their presidential candidate. It is game on. Without being sub judice, it is clear that after the discharge of the injunction against Rupiah Banda, the ECZ and several other interested parties almost certainly are taking him as the MMD’s presidential candidate. We, however, await the determination of the final matter to know for sure whether Nevers Mumba will bounce back to lead the MMD into the by-election.

zambia_flag_map

Zambia Decides

By far the winner on the campaign trail so far has been Hakainde Hichilema. Time has worked to his advantage. While the PF and the MMD were embroiled in bitter internal wrangles, HH had the time and support from his caucus to take his “Zambia United” tour across the breadth and depth of our country. This tour had taken him to Solwezi, Nakonde, Kapiri Mposhi and Kabwe. He has also been to Chama, Isoka and Kasama. If there is any candidate that has had a head start to this campaign it is Hakainde Hichilema. The infighting going on with his competitors has helped him sharpen his message. Those discontented with both the PF and the MMD have expressed support for Hichilema’s candidacy. Some MMD Members of Parliament such as Felix Mutati have now pledged to help campaign for Hichilema. It does look like this election will be his to lose.

Even though Hichilema’s campaign has had all these strengths, his fragilities are also quite enormous. Hichilema only campaigned with his wife once: during the launch of his candidacy. And that was the last time we heard of his wife. In Zambia, most successful presidential campaigns must greatly rely on the help of spouses. The Hichilema campaign team should find a way of involving his wife. If she cannot address rallies, they should at least find a way to take of lot of pictures of her with her husband. It is not necessary for her to talk or to address masses like her husband, but it will be good for the optics of Hakainde Hichilema to have Mrs. Hichilema appear with him. Generally, Hichilema appears stiff and rigid on the campaign trail. He has tried to loosen up a bit by biking along other supporters in Chipata. He has also been pictured dancing to some tunes on rallies. That is positive and helps shed off the stiff, business-like and serious appearance.

As stated earlier, the other thing HH needs to work on is to make more appearances with his wife. This is important to the electorate who for some reason still highly regard family unity. The second reason is that spouses somehow humanize candidates. There is something that a spouse brings to a campaign that a candidate cannot. When we look at Michael Sata’s campaign, his wife Christine Kaseba helped humanize him and brought support on her own. Chiluba had Vera during his 1991 campaigns. And so did Levy Mwanawasa, have Maureen, during his 2001 campaigns. I just hope that Hichilema will make his wife a little bit more visible. She has a lot to add to the campaign.

Mrs Lungu addressing a rally in Mongu alongside husband

Mrs Lungu addressing a rally in Mongu alongside husband

PF presidential candidate Edgar Lungu has already identified this reality and has his wife by his side during campaigns. She spoke at Edgar Lungu’s rally in Mansa making her husband to quip, “this woman could as well grab my Chawama seat”. That exchange of words can only work to the advantage of Edgar Lungu. It shows that they both as a family are ambitious and want to rule the nation. It also shows that both Edgar and his wife are susceptible to the temptation and trappings of office: a reality that rarely works against any political couple. Spouse involvement in politics also gives the people something to talk about apart from the real boring issues. In politics real issues could be monotonous, repetitive and uninteresting. But what can never be boring is the accent of a wife of a presidential candidate. People would like to gossip about how a spouse wears her Chitenge and how she does her Brazilian hair. They want to talk about how she looks and what she says. In the end, such talk only goes to humanize candidates. It also translates political rhetoric into a more common conversation. And today, between Hichilema and Lungu, Lungu looks more human, and casts a common man image to the electorate. In the ballot box, people would more certainly vote for a candidate they feel identifies with them. Hichilema has a lot of good things going well for him. But he needs to repackage his optics and his wife and family could help him do that.

Hakainde Hichilema

Hakainde Hichilema

Another matter of great interest is with regard to “tribal perception”. When Lungu went to Mansa, speakers included Kalaba, Inonge, Bwalya and Lubinda. When Hakainde Hichilema spoke in Mumbwa and Kabwe campaign speakers comprised Maureen Mwanawasa and Charles Milupi. That being the case, it appears like Lungu has a more diverse team than HH appears to have. This is not a matter of factual reality, but a matter of perception. And perceptions do matter in Zambian politics. Hichilema needs to deliberately diversify the team he takes on his campaigns. When he went to Muchinga this week, he appeared with Felix Mutati. But he needs to do more than just appear with Mutati. Diversity must appear sincere on HH’s part. It should not appear like he is just trying to work with Mutati to win votes. There has to be some changes in HH’s campaign team to show that he is willing to genuinely work with other political players, particularly those coming from the Northern-Muchinga corridor. The Hakainde campaign team should ask themselves, why is it that in spite of a lot of hard work in this area, his party and campaign still gets perceived as regional or tribal? They need to quickly work on some optics. In Kasama when he visited the Chitimukulu, it was very disappointing that no one came to HH’s defense on time. By the time Mutale Nalumango was responding, it was already too late and Father Frank Bwalya had already taken over the narrative reinforcing the idea that UPND had lied about the Chitimukulu endorsement. What HH needs is a quick response team that handles sensitive tribal issues, especially with regard to Northern-Muchinga-Luapula corridor. This corridor could prove decisive for HH. If he cannot find those that can willingly work for him, he can at least hire someone to do that for him.

This campaign period will be about real issues. But sadly, it will also be about feelings, perceptions, and other irrelevant things. A candidate wins not because they have handled huge issues very well. Candidates win because they connect with the voters sometimes at very personal levels. It is in this regard that we must caution those that are underestimating Lungu simply because he did terribly during the Radio interview. Lungu might not be the best speaker, but if he were able to connect with the common man on the street, it would be difficult to beat him. With good management and change in optics HH could as well become that inspiring politician demanded by the common man and woman.

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Suggested citation:

Munshya, E. (2014). Hakainde Hichilema, Edgar Lungu and the Politics of Contrasts and Comparisons. Elias Munshya Blog (www.eliasmunshya.org). 13 December 2014