Irrelevant politicians

Is our Parliament as useless as the Ukrainian one which cheered on as the rot deepened and important institutions of governance were undermined and finally rendered useless and impotent?

Should Zambians really invest their effort and emotions in politicians who more often than not will change allegiance from the electorate to the “appointing” authority because of the plum jobs promised.

When it comes to a choice between a cushy job or money our representatives will ditch the electorate in favour of the job. Few  will stand for principle, even fewer will consult their electorate.

Last year our Parliament approved a budget in excess of K32 billion with a further K9 billion supplementary. This year the total budget is about K43 billion meaning that the economy has not grown and yet MPs will not make any observations to guide the executive.

Now the Government wants more borrowing power to cover irresponsible and ill executed projects which have no budgetary provision

Politicians are supposed to be servants of the people, championing and advocating public interest and yet  our Parliament does the exact opposite, ratifying appointments that are detrimental to the nation and sitting back as equally deleterious pieces of legislation are passed.

More than K5.5 billion used to cushion the vulnerable has been removed only to be used in by elections and similar useless expenditure and our Parliament is silent.

Our politicians are so short sighted that they will not appreciate that some of the legislation or lack of it will affect them in the long run.

That is why the confession by former Ukraine Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko makes a lot of sense. She said “I, as a politician, repent. I want to apologize before you for all politicians. Regardless of what party they’re in. Regardless of what positions they hold. Up until today, politicians were unworthy of you, they were unworthy of any drop of blood you shed to save this country. I want to do everything so that you forgive other politicians, other bureaucrats, other officials. I want you to be an integral part of building a new Ukraine, and your ideas, strength, work ethic, patriotism, morality and honor be the guarantee of the just management of a new country,”

She was speaking soon after being released from Prison where she had served more than 30 months on a contrived corruption charge that Parliament chose to cancel.

The parallels are so uncanny. Our courts have been used time and again to persecute and humiliate politicians that fall out of favour.

There is little if anything that our parliamentarians will say to very clear abuses of the law and injustices because they fear for their positions or indeed fear to antagonize the system.

That is why Yulian has respect for the ordinary people who stood up to injustice and decided to make a change for the better.

“You earned with your courage, blood, heroism and patriotism the right to run your country. If governments and parliaments are formed without you it will be unacceptable and immoral. Those people that were killed by the bullets protected all 46 million of us. Today everyone has the right to take part in building a new strong European state,” Yulia Tymoshenko said.

That is why the challenge is on all Zambian to build a better future.