Levy Patrick Mwanawasa


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Why is that jetliner for British Airways parked ov’r yonder when all other flights from the same region go to Terminal 5 at London Heathrow? One would ask … It is being fumigated, Another would respond. Fumigated!!! Why?? The Other would inquire. Because it just landed from Zambia, Another would answer.

British Airliner at London Heathrow Airport

British Airliner at London Heathrow Airport - All Other Arriving Passenger Go Throw Terminal 5 Except Those Arriving From Lusaka

So all flights from Zambia have to be sent to that concourse? One would ask further. Yeep!!! Another would answer. I don’t get it … The Other would say. Well, sorry that you guys don’t seem to get it, Another would say. These jetliners coming from Zambia stink to high heavens and we are just trying to be hygienic around here.

 

Dog on it, you mean Zambians stink and are not hygienic? I have seen some dressed in the best not only in Zambia but also around the world. One would prod. Nope!!! Ain’t got nothing to do with the way they dress, Another would counter.

 

You got to work in the cargo bay to understand what I am talking about, Another would retort. You see, when that plane lands, it carries with it as cargo some of the most stinking staunches, from Kapenta, Chapatwa, Insefu, Ingulube all dried just to mention a few, Another continues.

 

Why can’t we ban them from carrying such things? One would probe. I guess we make some much money from charging excess luggage fees that we just wink an eye, The Other would add. I am glad you are finally getting it, Another would say.

 

So what we do is collect their money but humiliate them when they land in London because we have to ferry them in buses to the other concourse for connecting flights. Besides, have you been to Lusaka? Another would continue …

 

Nope!!! One and The Other would respond almost in unison. Well, their airport looks like you are landing in the former Soviet Union, Another would answer. But we don’t care because we make so much money on this route compared to others that we actually fly there four times a week … besides the fact that it is the same place where you have sporadic cholera outbreaks; we got to be more vigilant …

 

… it is embarrassing to say the least how the smart people of the Zambian Enterprise are being treated upon arrival in London, but much of the blame has to be carried by us. In one of our weekly memos entitled Success Corner: Do You Have A Perception Problem? You Can Get A Hang On It …  we wrote the following …

 

We can not control what others think about us entirely but we can certainly circumvent their perceptions of us. Each one of us needs to make sure that the perception of others towards us is positive because people respond based on their perception of what they anticipate would be our reactions to circumstances.

 

To be successful in any enterprise one needs to have the ability to read people and tailor antitheses to what he/she perceives to be the most logical derivative reaction(s) from the said subjects.”

 

In our case the Brits look at our airport, our customs clearing facilities and our concourse at Lusaka International Airport and because these infra-structures are such a sorry sight in the modern world we are treated with impunity when in their presence.

 

“Without the ability to control peoples’ perceptions one is at a loss for advancement in any endeavor be it family, enterprise and otherwise. Most people fail miserably in life and business not because of lack of expertise but because they do not have the ability to circumvent others’ perception(s) of themselves.”

 

I guarantee you, if Lusaka International Airport had the same structures as Washington’s Dulles International, New York’s JFK International, or Johannesburg International, we would not be treated the way we are right now.

 

Because we portray poverty at our departing airport we are treated with it at the point(s) of entry. We have to control that perception by the way we carry ourselves. We need a complete overhaul at Lusaka International Airport.

Our Passengers In London Are Sent To Part Of Heathrow Similar To Lusaka International Airport, Ferried By Bus To The Main Concourse ...

Our Passengers In London Are Sent To Part Of Heathrow Similar To Lusaka International Airport, Ferried By Bus To The Main Concourse ...

We need to create an environment similar to other premier world capitals. When a world class traveler lands in Lusaka, he/she wouldn’t have a sense of arriving at a provincial capital let alone a nation’s capital.

 

Now don’t you tell me we have no money!!! The Auditor General’s report for 2007 alone revealed government had squandered K14 trillion, O yes, trillions of Kwacha as in “thanks a trillion”. Do you know how far that would go in setting up an entirely new airport similar to at least London Gatwick?

 

That kind of money can create a total facelift for Lusaka International Airport and we would no longer have the same look as the former Soviet Union airports. If the current government has no idea on God’s earth how and where to find that money let them ask …

 

No one is going to find the money for us, we have the money already – we just have to move it around. No one is going to build an airport for us; we have to build it ourselves. No one is going to fund our own household needs we need to do that ourselves.

 

The more we do things that would give us a facelift that the world would see, the more respect we get from the world. The more we take care of our own business the more people would want to do business with us.

 

The more we improve ourselves and change the way others think about us the more others see us in a different light. We can’t say this enough, perception, perception, perception. Perception is everything.

 

Ed Louis Cole used to say, “… if you want to pull the crowds, set yourself ablaze.” It is time the smart people of the Zambian Enterprise set themselves ablaze and built a world-class international gateway at Lusaka International Airport …

Artist's impression of the new terminal five at Heathrow Airport. The terminal opened in April 2008 with the second phase due to open in 2011. Total Cost £4.2bn ...

Artist's impression of the new terminal five at Heathrow Airport. The terminal opened in April 2008 with the second phase due to open in 2011. Total Cost £4.2bn ...

Folks, we are dead serious about this. If the Zambian government doesn’t know how to get this done, let them consult us … our business consulting team will provide a project proposal for them, including all schematics, financing plans, cost recovery plans as well as operational plans, for a fee.

 

Of course the Brits like to do things in extremes sometimes we know that, they were our colonial masters, but much of what needs to be done is right below own noses.

 

And of course we can achieve anything we set our minds to … we are Zambians for crying out aloud, let’s change the way we are treated by improving where we come from.

 

Seriously, the smart people of the Zambian Enterprise deserve a better Lusaka International Airport and it is government’s duty to build or facilitate building one, come 2009.

 

Compliments of the Season, Live Long & Prosper; that’s this week’s memo from us at the Zambian Chronicle … thanks a trillion.

 

Brainwave R Mumba, Sr.

CEO  & President – Zambian Chronicle 

 

Copyrights © 2008 Zambian Chronicle. All rights reserved. Zambian Chronicle content may not be stored except for personal, non-commercial use. Republication and redissemination of Zambian Chronicle content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Zambian Chronicle. Zambian Chronicle shall not be liable for any errors, omissions, interruptions or delays in connection with the Zambian Chronicle content or from any damages arising therefrom. 

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Well, ladies and gentlemen; the numbers are in and our team has been working hard to be as accurate as possible. The verdict is clear, Levy P Mwanawasa, SC. has posthumously clearly won the Zambian Chronicle “Africa’s President of the Year Award” for 2008.

 

Most people in our audience know that Zambian Chronicle was started last year as an alternative multi-media private enterprise committed to raising the standard, while increasing awareness not only in Africa but around the world and last year’s award went to Zine El Abidine Ben Ali president of Tunisia.

 

You can read more about last year’s award and conditions as well as modalities used to reach that consideration by clicking on this link; Zambian Chronicle’s African President of the Year (2007) Award Goes To President Ben Ali of Tunisia …

 

Last year Levy P Mwanawasa, SC. ended up in the top 7 presidents on the continent in critical areas but had a favorable rating ranking him in the overall top 5% percentile. We expanded this year’s recital parameters because we wanted rankings to include among other things performance based criterion during a president’s tenure apart from national indices only.

 

GDP per capita growth

Levy scored highest in the criteria because nominal GDP per capita growth is an important aspect of how well the general populace perform in a given economy. It has a direct bearing on how well the citizenry are benefiting from local economic growth.

 

Nominal GDP figures include less estimation and more accurately reflect the participation of the inhabitants of a country in the global economy as well. These figures are so important that each year three different organizations (IMF, World Bank and CIA) each come up with different ones.

 

In our analyses we used a grossing method that gave us weighted averages. So from the time he took over office to his death in 2008, LPM presided over a nominal GDP per capita growth that grew a staggering 300% from as low as $360 to $1,400.00. Of course the world best is over $44,000.00 but $1,400.00 was a great start for us.

 

This did not come by sheer luck, LPM and his team worked so hard that they negotiated outstanding public liabilities with donor nations and other ultra-vires creditors that they managed to wipe out our national debt from a staggering $7 billion to as low as $500 million.

 

Our own national reserves increased from zero at the time he took over to $1.4 billion. In fact as we report today, Zambia has FX reserves to protect against any outflows, says Central Bank Governor Dr. Caleb Fundanga …  In terms of percentage growth, the number is actually infinity because nothing can be divided into zero.

 

Gross official reserves include Bank of Zambia’s (BoZ) holdings of foreign cash, foreign exchange and foreign securities, Zambia’s reserve position at the IMF, and SDR holdings. Gross reserves data is compiled on daily basis by adding/subtracting transactions for the day to/from the previous day’s position.

 

These transactions cover all purchases and sales of foreign exchange, donor inflows, debt service disbursements, government and BoZ uses of foreign exchange, interest receipts and payments, valuation gains and losses and any other inflows and outflows.

 

There simply is no comparison as to another president’s achievement on the continent of Africa either in terms of tenure or simply duration that even came close to that of LPM in this area at all.

 

Transparency Index

This was the hardest of all parameter for us because data complied by Transparency International from 2000 to 2008 was different in many aspects. This is because the organization changed their reporting structure and added more variables in their indices that make up what they call Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI).

 

While in 2000 they only reported on 90 nations, for instance; they increased that to almost 180 for 2008. In 2000 Zambia shared the 57th position with Latvia but in 2008 despite being low, some of the variables were due to lack of enough raw data.

 

So, in certain areas if we used the same string of data from 2000 to 2008 as complied by Transparent International, a lot of flaws would have been discovered because in some instances we would have been comparing apples to oranges and the resultant would not have been either logical or asymmetrical.

 

So for us at the Zambian Chronicle we looked more at how general business practices improved on the ground within the Zambian Enterprise. We looked at the unprecedented bold decisions LPM took on the continent to an extend of striping of his predecessor immunity due to alleged past corrupt practices.

 

Never before had this ever happened on the continent of Africa but it showed his commitment to building a different nation that did not do business as usual. This earned him a lot of sway among western nations and increased his capital as a steward of good governance.

 

We looked at how he let the law take its course without interfering in any way possible despite all kinds of pressure from all avenues and forums … I am proud to report even pressure from us at the Zambian Chronicle at times, for instance.

 

We looked at how level-headed he was about graft and its other derivatives and found no comparison as to another president’s achievement on the continent of Africa either in terms of tenure or simply duration that even came close to that of LPM in this area as well.

 

National GDP growth

This is not supposed to be confused with the nominal GDP per capita above. While the earlier has to do with individual(s) income and subsequent participation in a national economy the later has to do with the overall national economic growth.

 

GDP real growth has to do with the total goods and services produced and or consumed in a given year and it is the best measure of national wealth and a nation’s capacity to compete in terms of movement of goods and services.

 

Even more what we were interested in was not just GDP real growth but GDP (real) growth rate which shows the increase in value of all final goods and services produced within a nation in a given year. It does not take into account purchasing power parity neither does it account for inflation. It is a measure of economic development.

 

That real growth rate is extremely important because it is the one that eventually gives a nation the ability to surpass another or be replaced by another in terms of economic development and or ranking. For example, 100 years ago the economy of the United State of America and that of Mexico were the same size numerically.

 

However, the US economy grew by one more percentage point rate higher than that of Mexico each year for those 100 years and today America has the world’s largest economy while Mexico ranks as the 52nd.

 

Furthermore, China had been lagging behind most economies all the way through the 90’s until it turned its economic engines to supercharged status. Within 10 years, it surpassed the Italian, French, British and German economies because of having a reasonable real GDP real growth rate. Today it is the world third largest economy.

 

On the African continent, Angola has enjoyed the status of one of the fastest growing economies not only in Africa but in the world. For instance its growth rate in 2005 was over 19% making it the world’s second fastest growing economy. In 2007 its rate was over 16.30% making it the world’s third fastest growing economy.

 

But what makes the Zambian Chronicle vouch for Levy (LPM) was the fact that when he inherited the economy of the Zambian Enterprise we were actually experiencing negative growth rates more like Zimbabwe (-6%) this year.

 

What LPM did was to reverse the trend from such negatives to the extend of almost -7% in the late 90’s to a positive 8% last year. This means that LPM tenure presided over a turn around of almost 15% into positive territory. It is so much easier to keep an economy in positive territory as opposed to moving it from a negative to a positive one but Levy did it.

 

Somehow he turned non performing assets such as mines, some that were almost flooded because they had been inoperable for a long time into profit making enterprises for the benefit of all within the Zambian Enterprise.

 

He commissioned new ones such as Lumwana that spurred new economic activities even in forgotten places like North Western Province turning the area in a new Copperbelt with new discoveries ranging from Oil and Gas to Gold and new Uranium deposits.

 

We began to be a premier tourist attraction again like there was something wrong with us in the first place. He created a conducive environment for commerce to thrive by and for all and all of a sudden commercial flights were being diverted to Lusaka instead of Gaborone, Lubito and Harare.

 

All of a sudden Lusaka was were it was all at, as we saw Bill Clinton Jets Into Zambia while the Best Ever US Ambassador To Zambia – Carmen M Martinez was busy cozying our relations and Mrs Bush With Zambian Kids – PlayPump™ having fun.

 

We looked, compared and contrasted with any other president on the continent who turned economic activities around within such a short period and we found none. There simply were no comparisons as to another president’s achievement on the continent of Africa either in terms of tenure or simply duration that even came close to that of LPM in this area as well.

 

Food security

With Levy at the helm, the Zambian Enterprise moved from being a donor recipient to a donor. Our enterprise moved from food shortages to Zambia to export 150,000 T white maize … as late as December 15, 2007 but today we will need to import a million tones.

 

Using government subsidies and proper farm produce marking strategies, Levy working in concert with his Minister of Agriculture then Mundia Sikatana created incentives within the Food Reserve Agency (FRA) that spurred agricultural production to unprecedented level on the continent of Africa.

 

Within his first term we had attained food security as well as sufficiency, were looking at donations and export for white maize a thing that had never happened in Zambian history. There simply were no comparisons as to another president’s achievement on the continent of Africa either in terms of tenure or simply duration that even came close to that of LPM in this area as well.

 

Peace Index Analysis

For this analysis we used a qualitative assessment of the level of distrust in other citizens, ranked from 1-5 (very low to very high) by the Economist Intelligence Unit’s Country Analysis team.

 

The lowest score (1) records that the majority of other people can be trusted and that there is an overall positive climate of trust in the country. The highest score (5) indicates that people are extremely cautious in dealing with others.

 

We found this unit of measure to be the most accurate and espoused it in totality and we were impressed to find that Zambia actually beat a lot of major western nations even when it comes to being a peaceful nation.

 

For instance, when Levy noticed injustices and what impact they had on peace in neighboring Zimbabwe, he was first to condemn Robert Mugabe calling the situation a “Sinking Titanic”. Never before had this ever happened in Africa where a sitting president openly rebuked another for the sake of world peace.

 

While Levy may not personally claim that big prize nationally as it had been passed on to him from his two predecessors, the very fact that he kept Zambia even more safe and improved on earlier released figures combined with other factors such as above is reason to give him first place on our continent by Zambian Chronicle.

 

We looked, compared and contrasted with any other president on the continent who turned economic activities around within such a short period and we found none. There simply were no comparisons as to another president’s achievement on the continent of Africa either in terms of tenure or simply duration that even came close to that of LPM in this area as well.

 

Other World Social, Economic & Political Indicators

While different social, economic and political contexts were used in comparing crime data from societies that are fundamentally different and may ignore key issues present within the Zambian Enterprise that impact upon levels of reporting some similarities were drawn.

 

For example, different social norms in some countries may make it difficult for women to report cases of rape or sexual abuse, while in others; women are encouraged to come forward. The level of insurance coverage in a community is also a key indicator of the likelihood of citizens approaching the police as their claim for compensation may require such notification.

 

In addition, in societies where the police are or have been mistrusted by the population, most specifically during periods of authoritarian rule, reporting levels are likely to be lower than in cases where the police are regarded as important members of the community.

 

The International Crime Victim Survey (ICVS) is perhaps a more sensitive and accurate measure of crime – and arguably offers a picture of how the public views the criminal justice system – but is currently limited to a few, mainly industrialized, countries so these data are not included.

 

But what we found was rather shocking for a developing nation that the Zambian Enterprise actually ranked above average on the continent during Levy’s tenure. There simply were no comparisons as to another president’s achievement on the continent of Africa either in terms of tenure or simply duration that even came close to that of LPM in this area as well.

 

Overall, for us it was not just a question of bias, it was more of logic, data analysis and factual that we were able to crown levy P Mwanawasa, SC with the honorable title of “Africa’s President of the Year Award” for 2008 posthumously.

 

Long Live Levism, Long Live Levism, May Your Soul Rest In God’s Eternal Peace and congratulations for scooping this year’s Zambian Chronicle “Africa’s President of the Year Award” for 2008.

 

Compliments of the Season, Live Long & Prosper; that’s this week’s memo from us at the Zambian Chronicle … thanks a trillion.

 

Brainwave R Mumba, Sr.

CEO  & President – Zambian Chronicle 

 

Copyrights © 2008 Zambian Chronicle. All rights reserved. Zambian Chronicle content may not be stored except for personal, non-commercial use. Republication and redissemination of Zambian Chronicle content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Zambian Chronicle. Zambian Chronicle shall not be liable for any errors, omissions, interruptions or delays in connection with the Zambian Chronicle content or from any damages arising therefrom. 

Zambian Chronicle is a wholly owned subsidiary of Microplus Holdings International, Inc.

Copyrights © 2008 Microplus Holdings Int., Inc.

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Published:Nov 16, 2008

In 1991, after 27 years in power, Zambia’s Kenneth Kaunda decided to do the unthinkable. He called for multiparty elections.

At a time when many on the continent were used to leaders being removed through coups, revolutions and assassinations, the move shocked many.

The nation had been agitating for some time for the country to drop the one-party democracy model. Reeling from an economic crisis they blamed on the ruling United National Independence Party, the people wanted a chance to choose their leaders like people in other democracies.

Against the advice of his ministers and counsellors, Kaunda went ahead — with three years of his term still left.

When he was advised not to stand because he may suffer humiliation, he insisted he had unfinished business and was confident the people would allow him to complete it.

The opposite happened.

On the day the votes were counted, Kaunda quickly sensed that the trend was going against him. He decided not to wait for the final tally and phoned his rival, Frederick Chiluba, to congratulate him. He invited Chiluba over to State House and introduced him to the staff.

This is your president, he told them.

As the results were streaming in, the military chiefs rushed to State House, seeking an audience with Kaunda. They wanted to know what it was they should do about this state of affairs. Clearly, Chiluba could not be allowed to take power, they argued.

Kaunda proceeded to give them a lecture in democracy. He told them that he had sought the opinion of the Zambian people about who should run their country, and the people had clearly indicated that they would rather be ruled by Chiluba than him.

Who are we to think we are wiser than the people, he asked them.

The soldiers left State House dejected and unconvinced. His ministers and aides tried to prevail on him to declare a state of emergency and annul the election. He stood firm. “This is not the outcome I wanted but it is the outcome I must respect,” Kaunda said.

Later that night he conceded defeat in a television and radio address.

And he made sure the military were in attendance so that they, too, would be bound by his concession.

It is said that upon hearing the news of Chiluba’s concession, an aide of Zaire’s Mobutu Sese Seko ran into a cabinet meeting with a note informing the dictator of developments next door.

A shocked Mobutu nearly jumped out of his chair and exclaimed: “I thought KK was smart. How can he lose an election that he himself was running?”

Democracy had arrived in Zambia. But it turned out that, in exercising their democratic rights, the Zambians had made a big mistake.

Upon taking power, Chiluba went on a gluttonous rampage through the fiscus. He ferreted money to foreign accounts and pampered himself and his extended family at the state’s expense.

Chiluba even sought to run for a third term. He used youthful goons to force his party to help him change the constitution to enable him to run. He failed and Zambian democracy triumphed.

His successor, Levy Mwanawasa, turned out to be a better bet than Chiluba. Although he was no inspirational visionary, he consolidated democracy. By the time he died a few months ago, he had become one of the few heads of state on the continent prepared to break the leadership brotherhood’s code of silence on human rights abuses.

Last month, Zambia’s voters went to the polls to elect a new leader again. During the election campaign, the ruling Movement for Multiparty Democracy’s candidate, Rupiah Banda, and his opposition rival, Michael Sata, traversed the country, urging Zambians to back them.

Not a single rally was disrupted. Not a single leader was beaten up. Not a single chair was thrown.After the election there were cries of foul play from Sata and his supporters, who are challenging the results in court.

But that was about it.

The significance of this story is that there is a lot to be learnt from our brethren on the continent. Very often you hear the nonsense that democracy does not, and cannot, work in Africa. These views come from both condescending racists as well as apologists for African dictatorship.

You hear it from many in our ruling party — it is used to justify a one-party-dominant democracy and why we cannot afford to have strong opposition.

We need to develop our own brand of African democracy, some scholars and politicians say, which is a rather racist notion that the people of this continent dare not be trusted with making choices.

This piece is not about praising Kaunda and painting him as an angel and model of modern statesmanship. He was, after all, in power for 27 years, during which he wrecked that country’s economy.

It is also not to paint Zambia as the ultimate model of a working democracy. Zambia is by no means perfect.

Kaunda and the Zambian experience should show us roads we should not walk and mistakes we need not make.

But we can emulate their relatively successful efforts at building a stable democracy.

Our leaders should also take note of the fact that even an iconic leader like Kaunda could accept that the wisdom of the people could be superior to his.

Source: The Times – SA

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The old adage “practice makes perfect” holds true to every locale in the human enterprise  and or in everyone’s life. The upcoming presidential by-election will usher in a 4th president for the Zambian Enterprise, democratically elected in a peaceful transfer of power.

 

While others may want to just take this for granted, we at the Zambian Chronicle realize its importance and significance that we just had to write home about it. On a continent filled with rage and at best incumbents’ desire for lifelong presidencies, the Zambian Enterprise leads the pack in many ways.

 

In fact, other than ours in the Sub-Saharan region, Botswana is the only country that boosts of holding the longest record in peaceful transfer of power with democratically elected presidents and its economic stability speaks volumes of its own.

 

All things being equal, democracies have the ability to bring out the best among the collective; the people and not the system(s) become the means through which society chooses for itself what its desired posterity should be.

 

No one single person becomes more powerful than the sum of the all and by so doing it (a democratic system) creates checks and balances for the mutual benefit(s) of both the system and its peoples. Of all other latent issues, democracy tends to create a system of correcting wrongs with the greatest of ease.

 

Take the emergence of multiple party politics in 1991, for instance. The Kaunda era though vibrant at first could not stand the test of time. This is because it was built on flawed communistic policies and no amount of humanism preaching by KK or even Archangel Gabriel could improve anything otherwise at all.

 

The fact is simply that communism does not work, however perfectly envisioned even in a perfect world. Man is impenitently self-interested and when there is nothing for him/her but for the collective he/she tends to be ineffective at best.

 

It is no wonder every body during the latter Kaunda era developed a “Niva Boma” attitude. One was not obligated to anything and “Waco ni waco” (nepotism) swelled and huge misappropriation of all resources led to corruption and other graft devices.

 

When FTJ came on the scene, he really did not have any message at all but the smart people of the Zambian Enterprise gave him a chance all because they were ready for change. They were promised privatization, and without asking for accountability they went along because they had hope the time for “Niva Boma and Waco in Waco” had come to an end.When they matched through the streets chanting “The Hour, The Hour, The Hour Has Come”, to many others it did not matter whether or not that hour had come for them to be unemployed, that hour had come for them to be without medical coverage, free hospitals and free education; it mattered dimly squat what that “hour that had come” meant.

 

Most smarts even mistook democracy for privatization I often remark … but the system worked. This is not to say, there was no corruption, this is not to say peoples’ perception about “Niva Boma and Waco ni Waco” changed, in most cases these were actually amplified.

 

The Chiluba regime proved that too much power bestowed in the presidency was erroneous and corrective measures were taken, it also proved that zeal without knowledge is murderously dangerous for any enterprise and we started replacing rhetoric with execution starting with Levy P Mwanawasa, SC.

 

We learnt that government works better when it is accountable to the electorate and not the other way round. We learnt that there is still a lot of international goodwill out there as long as a nation is willing to do the right things, by taking the right steps, every time, all the time …

 

And overall, as every one adhered to good governance, bad apples were being identified and exposed, culprits brought to book including FTJ himself and the system got perfected day by day, thanks a trillion in great part to Levism (MHSRIP).

 

Levy had his share of mistakes too but we will leave those for others to comment at the present moment. But we know that he did his best to turn the economy, the work culture and posterity around; at each and every stage, he had the best interest of our Enterprise at heart …

 

After next week, the smart people of the Zambian Enterprise are heading to the polls again, in part to prove the system works but overall, to perfect it even further.

 

Oh yes, practice makes perfect and we encourage all the eligible smart people of the Zambian Enterprise to go the polls en masse, it’s our God given right, make use of it …

 

We once said here that not much would be expected out of this by-election because it is more of a care-taker presidency until the Tripartite General Election in 2011.

 

But we encourage even losers to understand that there is a lot of winning in losing and moving the nation forward after conceding – there can only be one president at a time.

 

Whoever becomes the next CEO of our Enterprise, we at the Zambian Chronicle will render our full moral support just like we did for Levy.

 

We will criticize him when we see mistakes made not because we want to be vocal for nothing by using our bully pulpit but because Zambia is greater than any single one of us.

 

Whatever the outcome, the real winner will be Levy P Mwanawasa, SC. who proved the system works and practice makes perfect, Long Live Levism!!!

 

Live Long & Prosper; that’s this week’s memo from us at the Zambian Chronicle … thanks a trillion.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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05 September 2008
 

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Two days after the late Zambian President Levy Mwanawasa was laid to rest, the National Executive Committee of the ruling Movement for Multiparty Democracy (MMD) meets Friday to choose its candidate in the forth-coming presidential by-election. The two top contenders are Vice President Rupiah Banda who is acting head of state and Finance Minister Ng’andu Magande.

Friday’s meeting also follows comments by former first lady Maureen Mwanawasa suggesting that her late husband preferred Magande as his successor. But Mwanawasa’s will, which was broadcast Thursday night on state radio and television made no reference to succession.

Mbita Chitala is a senior member of the ruling MMD. He told VOA that Zambia is a democracy and not a monarchy and the party will most likely choose Vice President Banda.

“I have been tapped by my party to advise as to who in my view should be a better candidate to represent us and let us win to retain the leadership of the country. And we have suggested that the current president Rupiah Banda who was the vice president for the last two years would be our best candidate,” he said.

Chitala said Vice President Banda, who is now acting president deserves to lead the party because of his many qualities.

“One of them is that we have the vice president of the country who is also senior trustee in our party and most qualified in terms of education and otherwise. We feel that he is truly would be the most representative of the country as well as the most experienced among those who may wish to vie,” Chitala said.

Former first lady Maureen Mwanawasa reportedly told a local newspaper last week that her late husband preferred Magande as his successor.

But Mwanawasa’s Will, which was broadcast Thursday night on state television and radio made no reference to succession. In stead the late president said he did his best to improve the standards of living for Zambians.

He talked about his strong belief in national development, good governance, the rule of law and democracy and his fight against corruption.

Mwanawasa expressed regrets in his will that in the process of fighting for the good of his country he may have forsaken himself.

“I regret that in my zeal to facilitate this fight, I lost friendship with a number of some of my best friends and at many times my own life and those of my family members were threatened,” Mwanawasa said in his will.

Chitala said the late Mwanawasa could not have mentioned succession in his will because Zambia is a democracy and not a monarchy.

“As regards the alleged will of our former president, unfortunately our country is not a monarchy. We are a democracy, and the way the founders of our party enshrined the democratic principles of succession, there has to be election among the contending members. And President Mwanawasa was a very good friend of mine, and we used to discuss these matters and as far as I knew him, he could never depart from the doctrine of democracy and become the monarchy behavior person,” Chitala said.

He accused former first lady Maureen Mwanawasa of once having an interest in succeeding her husband.

“To the contrary, I think that has just been unfortunate politics by the former first lady who herself had shown interest of wanting to succeed her late husband. But of course our custom doesn’t allow such kind of behavior, and we advised her that if she wants she can go out for a while may be mourn the late husband for at least year before getting back in politics,” Chitala said.

The late President Mwanawasa was revered for growing Zambia’s economy. But Chitala said Finance Minister Magande is not the architect of the economic success under late President Mwanawasa.

“Magande was never the architect. In fact that was the policy of former President Frederick Chiluba, and you know in economics the gestation period of programs takes many years. But one thing you cannot take away from Mr. Mwanawasa is that he was very dedicated to good governance,” he said.

Chitala dismissed suggestion that Vice President Banda, who is 71 years old, maybe too old compared to Magande.

“That is not correct. Mr. Banda was made vice president and senior trustee of the party and makes him qualified to be the candidate for president. In respect to age, yes he’s 71, but of course this is a transition period between now 2011, and we think that he is the best person to give us this transition. He is very energetic as far as we are concerned and we think he will be the best person to give this transition. Mr. Magande himself I think he’s 62 or 63,” Chitala said.

Source: Voice of America

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LUSAKA (AFP) — Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe and opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai put aside their rivalry Wednesday to join African heads of state at the funeral of Zambian President Levy Mwanawasa.

The bitter rivals mingled with more than a dozen African heads of state and government, as well as envoys from the United States and Britain, among 5,000 mourners around the Baptist church in Lusaka.

Zimbabwe President Robert Robert Mugabe offers his condolences to Zambia's First Lady Maureen MwanawasaMugabe paid tribute to Mwanawasa — who once referred to Zimbabwe as a “sinking Titanic” — when he arrived in the Zambian capital.

Mwanawasa died aged 59 in a Paris hospital on August 19 after suffering a stroke.

“Mwanawasa was a very courageous leader. He was very frank and wanted to change not only his country but the entire southern African region. We will greatly miss him,” state radio quoted Mugabe as saying.

South African President Thabo Mbeki, chairman of the 15-nation Southern African Development Community (SADC), was to deliver a speech at the funeral.

The late Zambian president was SADC chairman before Mbeki took over last month at a summit in Johannesburg.

Among African leaders present were President Ian Khama of Botswana and Bingu wa Mutharika of Malawi as well as Lesotho Prime Minister Pakalitha Mosisili.

Former colonial power Britain sent a delegation led by Foreign Office minister of state, Lord Malloch Brown, who has responsibility for African affairs. Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Jendayi Frazer represented the United States.

The mourners were led by Mwanawasa’s wife Maureen and their six children.

Mwanawasa was to be buried at Embassy Park, near the presidential offices, following the service.

Copyright © 2008 AFP. All rights reserved.

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LUSAKA (Reuters) – Southern African leaders gathered in Zambia on Wednesday at the funeral of President Levy Mwanawasa, who turned Africa’s biggest copper producer into a rare African success story.

Thousands of Zambians attended the funeral and were seated in tents erected at the parliamentary complex in the capital Lusaka. National flags flew at half-mast.

Mwanawasa, 59, died in a French military hospital last month after suffering a stroke in June. He had led Zambia since 2001 and was re-elected in 2006.

South African President Thabo Mbeki, Botswana’s leader Seretse Khama Ian Khama and the presidents of Namibia, Mozambique and Malawi also attended the funeral.

Mwanawasa’s copper-plated coffin was placed about five metres (yards) from the dais where leaders and officials were sitting.

Mwanawasa set himself apart from other regional leaders by speaking out about the political and economic crisis in neighbouring Zimbabwe, and was one of the fiercest critics of Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe — who attended the funeral.

His tough stance against corruption in Zambia endeared him to donor countries and he was credited with turning the southern nation into one of Africa’s economic success stories.

Mwanawasa’s economic policies helped produce strong growth averaging 5 percent annually over the last six years, though many Zambians still live in poverty.

Vice President Rupiah Banda is acting president, and a presidential election is expected in November.

The ruling Movement for Multiparty Democracy (MMD) will choose its presidential candidate on Friday.

Mwanawasa’s widow Maureen told mourners at the funeral that she felt sorry most of all for the orphans Mwanawasa took care of through his local Baptist church.

“He was the father of all. It is the orphans he took care of that bring pain to my throat, they are orphaned again”.

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