RB can stand, says civic leader

ZAMBIANS should engage in quality debates that discuss progressive leadership qualities instead of asking irrelevant questions that border on a person’s tribe, sex and age.

Zambian Voice executive director Chilufya Tayali said those aspiring for leadership must freely do so in line with democracy and not be treated like it was a crime to aspire for leadership positions at whatever level. “For example there have been calls for Rupiah Banda to come back into active politics and others have been reacting in a negative manner and have been asking irrelevant questions such as ‘why does he want to come back?’ ‘Is RB not too old?’

“All these are wrong questions, instead we should ask what Mr Banda has to offer and also allow him to answer,” Mr Tayali said.

He explained that even young people should be able to respond to similar questions as was being posed to Mr Banda to allow them to be judged on what they too could offer the country other than tribe, sex and even age.

He charged that if indeed Mr Banda wanted to come back to politics, he should be allowed without any form of intimidation or frustration.

Mr Tayali was speaking during a media event in line with Zambia’s 50 years Jubilee celebrations earmarked for this Friday.

He said the country was commemorating the Golden Jubilee in an environment where some citizens were enjoying themselves while the masses lived in abject poverty.

Mr Tayali said as a nation, there was need to focus on development programmes which looked at reducing the gap between the rich and the poor.

“We are happy that the Finance Minister focused his Budget on celebrating our Golden Jubilee as ‘One Zambia One Nation’ by Making Economic Independence a Reality for All’,” he said.

To reduce this gap, the Government has to spend more on investment other than consumption such as salaries and allowances.

“It does not make economic sense for a developing nation like Zambia to be spending more than 50 percent on salaries for less than 200 workers out of a population of 14 million,” he said.

He explained that it would be irresponsible for some politicians to incite public workers to strike in order to arm-twist the Government on the wage freeze when they were aware that the Budget was always in the negative.

Mr Tayali has since appealed for Government to cut down on its blotted Cabinet which was getting paid for doing very little or nothing