|The Citizens Democratic Party
Tel: +260-955-600674, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
|The year’s ending has coincided with the end of high copper prices. Since June 30 of 2008 to date, the
price and not as solid as the MMD Administration has claimed. Opportunity presented itself, through the
high demand of Zambia’s resources, and yet very few Zambians have benefited from this high. And for
The single greatest failure of our political leadership in Zambia is the inability, or unwillingness to think
years ahead. The MMD Administration, together with the “current opposition” should have used this
opportunity to heavily invest in our citizenry, by ensuring widespread and maximum benefit for ALL
Zambians. Instead, foreign companies continued to literally siphon money, under the eyes of leaders,
tasked to protect Zambia’s resources. Seemingly, our government is comfortable with scoring short
term successes, at the expense of the country’s future. Fact; China, the main beneficiary and buyer of
Zambia’s copper, has already started to implement measures to curtail and reduce the “trade” which
has gone on during this “high”. The Citizens Democratic Party wonders if the MMD Government and the
opposition (through parliament) have got a plan on the table to contain the obvious effects of China
reducing its need for copper. Clearly, nothing comprehensive has been made public as to what the
Zambian government intends to do in the coming year as close as it is.
LOOKING AHEAD; WHERE DOES ZAMBIA GO FROM HERE WITH FALLING COPPER
Looking forward to what lies ahead particularly for Zambia; The Citizens Democratic Party still sees
opportunity, even though there is an economic break down in the financial centers of the global market.
An informed and capable leadership will know that whilst it is true that the world economy has slowed,
there were serious breaches in the money markets of individual countries, in the manner financial
matters were handled by PRIVATE corporations. In any case, the various countries have already started
to take extraordinary steps to try and correct this fiasco. Furthermore, economists know that any
economy is cyclical. There are ups and downs with any economy and sometimes the “downs” are really
adverse” and at other times the “ups” are really good.
For Zambia, now is not the time for leaders to bury their heads in the sand and blame the downturn in
the world economy for their failures or inadequacies. The Kwacha has “lost value” in the past weeks,
and the world economic downturn, as well as the fall of copper prices is indeed a very convenient
condition to blame.
As The Citizens Democratic Party we are saying that this is the time for the MMD government, along with
the opposition to for once THINK AHEAD. With the limited finances gained from the copper boom, it is
time for the government to be prudent and stretch the financial resources by engaging into ventures
which have long term positive effects on our country. The government together with the opposition
cannot afford at this time to pass bills in parliament which have little effect on the Zambia’s success.
That means that taking on redundant projects such as “building” feeder roads, needs to be replaced
with building proper permanent and meaningful infrastructure which will not consume limited resources
every year. With the end of the copper high prices, Zambia can only afford to embark on programs
which will pay in the future. Here lies an opportunity, to use the money gained from the copper boom in
meaningful sectors which pay dividends in the long term. Education also remains pivotal and the
government should place a massive investment into this sector-for education serves the future. Also,
The Citizens Economic Empowerment Program should be seriously reviewed and forced to embark on
programs that will truly embark on empowering Zambians for the long term. If there is one simple
lesson to be learnt from the fall of copper prices is that nothing lasts forever. Now is the time for the
MMD government and opposition (through parliament) to be bigger than the problem that affects our
country with respect to the mining industry which has served as our life-line for a long time.
Our emphasis is the MMD Government, in hand with the “current opposition” should attempt to THINK
AHEAD, WE had a similar situation in 1974 where copper prices shot up, then suddenly went down,
without the Zambian government having a fall back plan. CDP learns from the nations’ history and we
encourage policy makers and the opposition alike to also learn from our nation’s history to plan ahead.
|The unexpected death of our sitting president brought about a concern as to who is best-suited to take
over the "recycled politicians" who leave a lot to be desired. Our country seemed to have resigned to an
unfortunate reality that we would have to simply SETTLE for the lesser of two (or is it three?) evils.
Before we even get into politics, all things considered, one can easily win an argument that supports the
fact that the current choice of leadership for the country is nowhere close to what our country requires.
We have been forced to settle for the closest thing. As we have stated previously, the current so called
"major opposition" leadership are formed on the MMD blueprint, and there is no actual difference in
operation except in party name.
CDP wishes to use the current political situation to espouse the benefits of decentralization in relation
to leadership. We believe that proper decentralization of the governance of the country, will greatly
contribute to produce leadership commensurate to our country's needs. The system of the past 44
years has not given chance to groom and produce individuals who may potentially lead our country. It is
sadder to note that even with the introduction of democracy in 1991, "leaders" are either handpicked- or
require the absolute blessing of a predecessor for them to "lead". Citizens, these are the politics
Zambians have been subjected to due to a system which gives the central government a "blank check"
in terms of authority over the nation's affairs.
The Citizens Democratic Party has a simple but practical solution to this issue of leadership. Our
solution is that when CDP comes into power, the CDP government will immediately push for legislation
which will scrap the appointed Provincial Ministers position, and replace it with an electable office, open
to any party in the country. And these individuals who are elected to head the province cannot be
removed by the sitting government, but only by the people through an election to be held at the same
intervals as the general election.
From this leadership level, the country should be able to easily identify who can lead the country as
President from the performance and conduct of these individuals. Zambians will see an actual track
record of these provincial leaders, which will enable the electorate make an informed decision during
the general election. The CDP decided to amplify this benefit of decentralization, among others, due to
what is going on in the country.
We do not expect that the "MMD spinoffs" will initiate such a dramatic shift in governance, being that they
share the same foundation. The CDP's philosophy is "Putting People First". With this solution, we are
taking power closer to the people at provincial level. The details of the plan and its functionality will be
made clear in our manifesto.
|THE COPPER HIGH; WHAT DOES ZAMBIA HAVE TO SHOW FOR IT?
From The Citizens Democratic Party Economic Policy Desk; a condensed thought on our country’s
|Decentralization In Relation To Leadership
|Putting People First
|Links to Issues: