The shame of Amnesty International (AI)
Up until now, I had a lot of admiration for the Amnesty International (AI) because it professionally handled whatever cases it came across. But for it to order a sovereign country like Zambia today to drop charges against HH and GBM for whatever reasons, I find that rather odd and absurd. The matter would have been different if the courts found the two men innocent but Government had insisted to lock them up. In our prisons are adulterers, adulteresses, thieves, fornicators, murderers and criminals of various descriptions who could use AI’s sympathy, but why only GBM and HH? Is it because AI is a Western idea from where it is suspected the two men (HH and GBM) got a lot of support in their quest to form government? If AI has run out of ideas, it is not our problems for it to start meddling in matters before our courts of law. It’s insane. If indeed HH and GBM have not committed any offence, they have nothing to worry about because freedom will certainly come their way. After all our judicial system talks about those arrested being innocent until proven guilty. I know that AI thinks this is a high profile case from which they could mint a penny or two but for me, I think that the organisation is merely poking its ugly nose in matters it has no bailiwick in. When HH went ballistic insulting members of the courts with unbelievable impunity, the AI was surprisingly quiet. I suppose it was something which could not burden them in anyway. Has AI got any evidence that the Zambian government is misusing the criminal justice system to settle scores with its perceived political opponents? Again, where was AI when some Zambians were made homeless in their country by merely being in Southern Province, the home of HH? Their houses and other properties were burnt to ashes for being non-Tongas, a tribe of HH? Is it not for the same reason that HH and GBM have been reported to International Criminal Court (ICC) and the matter is currently receiving urgent attention? Come on AI, you can do better than this instead of coming up with imprudent demands on our Government. That the two gentlemen are facing possible prosecution by ICC should get you thinking. If I were President Lungu, I would advise that he should just ignore the AI because our criminal justice system has performed wonders so far.
Josiah Soko Salima Road, Matero
Big picture needed over ‘persecuted’ ministers
Dear Editor, I write as an afterthought of the ongoing mudslinging of the former Ministers who remained in office after the dissolution of Parliament prior to last August’s elections. The ministers remained in office not because of their own liking but due to some lacunas in our Constitution. Moreover, the question that begs an answer is whether the ministers were just seated without doing anything or were in office executing their ministerial duties. If the ministers were in office serving the Zambian people, then they deserve to be paid just like any other person would claim remuneration for work done. It is then not fair to ask them to refund the money while they performed their duties; worked for it. I am, however, in no way supporting their stay in office then because I am not a legal person but the fact that they were in office working, they cannot work for nothing! Let us not politicise everything but look at the bigger picture always, that way, we shall win respect. This is, however, food for thought.
Wisdom Muyunda CHINGOLA
Do our rich Zambians care?
Dear Editor, I write with a heavy heart on the unfolding events in our country concerning those self-proclaimed wealthy people, yet little or nothing is seen from their rich empires to empower the majority poor Zambians. Many of them have boasted on political platforms of being very rich, yet they don’t care for the poor apart from using them to ascend to political power. More often than not, they are actually bad employers to their own workers. Where is their pride then? It only tells that the majority vulnerable and poor Zambians are only important to them for political mileage. Let us be very civil in our political expediency and remember that power with a hungry following is very dangerous. That is why even the Bible is clear when it says the ‘hand that giveth is better than the one that receiveth’. It is for this reason that I again applaud President Lungu for committing part of his monthly remunerations for the purpose of advancing the welfare of the poor. Lastly, I would also like to take this opportunity to commend the Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos for donating his Nobel Peace Prize money he recently was awarded to the victims of the 52 years of civil war in his country. The US$925,000 will surely go a long way in alleviating poverty for the many poor people of Colombia. That is taking self-introspection and realising that the poor need the money more than yourself. Let our self-acclaimed rich in society always care for the poor people even before they ascend to political power. Concerned Citizen CHINGOLA
Women support inadequate Editor, Formation of women’s clubs have not helped address challenges women face because the Ministry of Gender has demonstrated incapacity to provide them with support. The tendency to only support one or a few clubs among many is not helping improve women’s lives. Women have demonstrated that they can perform but what has let these women down is lack of empowerment schemes. Empower many women to ensure that they keep their families together. As you know these days most women are the ones keeping their husbands and feeding them. Kennedy Munyemesha