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A political buffet is my choice

As Election Day draws closer, I find myself in a prayerful and reflective posture. The choices are not that easy for me.


Every political choice has its pros and cons. I see no angels or perfect politicians lining up for our votes at both national and local government level tomorrow.

I wish I had the choice to vote in a manner that would minimise real threats associated with one party and amplify the positive aspects offered by another.

I wish I could move politicians in and out of parties to achieve a slate closer to perfection.

I wish I could do the same with a few wisemen and women to temper the ambitions of youthful exuberance and the ill-effects of inexperience. Pure idealism, I know.

There are characters I am absolutely terrified of in all the main parties and still some who give me reason to be hopeful in a few of the political formations.

The combination of raw political ambition and inexperience is as dangerous as the prospect of an unstable gun-toting soldier angling for the presidency.

Remember the disaster and disappointment that was the evangelical Frederick Chiluba, who declared Zambia a Christian nation, and the murderous Idi Amin, who came to power via a coup in Uganda?

There are no guarantees or certainties in life, let alone in the rough and tumble of corrupting politics.

My prayer is that none of the political parties get a two-thirds majority in Parliament.

After what we have been through, governing must be a negotiated enterprise to constrain the tendency for political overreach.

We are collective victims of too much power at the disposal of one individual surrounded by acquiescent sycophants.
Too much power in the hands of a single individual or political party is a political aphrodisiac for even the best-intentioned politicians.

If I had my way, tomorrow would deliver a result that would force the politicians to put nation building and unity above parochial party interests.

A result that only helps accentuate the polarisation and divisions in our country might be a hollow outcome.

But then as they say “the train has already left the station” and it is what it is.

Fortunately, my vote is my secret. I will vote for a presidential candidate who I am persuaded will guarantee peace and stability and focus on creating an enabling environment for business to prosper and create jobs.

I will vote for a Member of Parliament who has a clean record and has capacity to hold the executive to account.

Lastly, I will vote for a councillor who is literate and has the requisite skills and experience to deliver at local government level.

So I am not likely to choose my president, MP and councilor from a single political party. I will treat this more like a buffet rather than an a la carte menu.

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