Author: Socialist Party ZambiaThe Socialist Party is a political formation whose primary mandate is to promote and entrench socialist values in the Zambian society. Anchored on the principles of Justice, Equity and Peace (JEP), the Socialist Party shall transform the Zambian society from capitalism to socialism, building socialism in three key sectors: Education, Agriculture and Health.

Statement of the Socialist Party on the death of Diego Maradona

Statement of the Socialist Party on the death of Diego Maradona Featured

The Socialist Party (Zambia) joins the progressive world in mourning Diego Maradona.

Maradona, anti-imperialist, socialist and arguably the greatest football player of all time passed away yesterday at the age of 60.

Maradona was a leftist on the football fields and also in politics. As a football player he tirelessly fought against corruption in the International Federation of Association Football (FIFA), which he compared to a mafia.

He struggled to unionize football players and in the late 90s, Maradona, with other prominent stars, formed the International Association of Professional Football Players to defend players’ rights.

Maradona, also known as “El 10”, openly showed his support to left-wing, socialist and progressive movements and governments in the world and specifically in Latin America. He also openly defied imperialism and colonialism and was a firm supporter of the Palestinian cause saying, “In my heart I am Palestinian. I am a defender of the Palestinian people, I respect them and sympathize with them, I support Palestine without fear.”

He proudly wore a Che Guevara tattoo on his arm and a Fidel Castro one on his leg. He was a close friend and supporter of Hugo Chavez, Evo Morales and Fidel Castro among other socialist leaders. He once said, “I believe in Hugo Chávez. I am Chavista. Everything that he and Fidel do, from my point of view, is the best.”

As a socialist and anti-imperialist Maradona remained a committed supporter of Venezuela’s Bolivarian Revolution and progressive social movements across Latin America, never losing hope in the poor and the oppressed to emancipate themselves.

Maradona said, “I am from the left in the sense that I am for the progress of my country, to improve the life of poor people, so that we all have peace and freedom. We cannot be bought, we are lefties on the feet, we are lefties on the hands, and we are lefties on the mind. That has to be known by the people, that we say the truth, that we want equality, and that we don’t want the Yankee flag planted on us.”

Rest in anti imperialist and socialist power, Diego Armando Maradona!

Issued by Fred M’membe, President, on behalf of the Politburo of Socialist Party (Zambia)

Mwika Royal Village, Chinsali

Statement of the Socialist Party on the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence

Statement of the Socialist Party on the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence Featured

Today, Wednesday 25 November 2020 is the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women and marks day one of the 16 Days of Activism.

Each year, from November 25 to December 10, World Human Rights Day, the 16 Days of Activism campaign calls for action against one of the world’s most persistent violations of human rights – violence against women.

During the 16 Days of Activism, the Socialist Party unites with people around the world to raise awareness about gender-based violence, challenge discriminatory attitudes and struggle for improved laws and services to end violence against women for good.

This year the Socialist Party joins the world to campaign for improving of informal women workers – domestic workers, home-based workers, street vendors, agricultural workers, waste-pickers, and sex workers – whose lives and livelihoods have been acutely impacted by COVID-19 and the unprecedented economic crisis that has followed.

On November 25, 1960, sisters Patria, Minerva and Maria Teresa Mirabal, three political activists who actively opposed the cruelty and systematic violence of the Trujillo dictatorship in the Dominican Republic, were clubbed to death and dumped at the bottom of a cliff by Trujillo’s secret police.

The Mirabal sisters became symbols of the feminist resistance, and in commemoration of their deaths November 25 was declared International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women in Latin America in 1980. This international day was formally recognize by the United Nations in 1999.

In June 1991, the Centre for Women’s Global Leadership (CWGL), alongside participants of the first Women’s Global Institute on Women, Violence and Human Rights, called for a global campaign of 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence.

The 16 days begins with the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women and ends with International Human Rights Day on December 10 – highlighting that violence against women is a fundamental violation of human rights.

Violence against women continues to occur at an alarming scale in Zambia and indeed in every country in the world. Too often it is accepted as normal behavior and the global culture of discrimination against women allows violence to occur with impunity.

Violence against women is a global problem and it requires global action.

To end violence against women, we need to challenge the attitudes that perpetuate, rationalize and normalize that violence, and deny women’s right to safety. Men are overwhelmingly the perpetrators of gender-based violence. To see violence truly eliminated, the attitudes of men need to change.

Shifting these behaviors is hard and slow, but gender equality means all of us, and working with all genders is the only way to see true change.

Violence against women is not inevitable; it is preventable.

Issued by Fred M’membe on behalf of the Politburo of the Socialist Party

Mwika Royal Village, Chinsali

Caught in a web of denials and refusals

Caught in a web of denials and refusals Featured

For a long time, the rulers of our country were denying that they had over borrowed and there was not going to be a problem. They were extremely defensive and sensitive to any criticism of their indebtedness. They were totally in denial. They would even brag that they will not stop borrowing.

What are they saying today? They are blaming everything on the coronavirus and their unpatriotic critics, detractors who are trying to destroy the image of the country.

They also attempted to change the Constitution of our Republic on their own, by themselves through Bill 10. They were not ready to listen to anyone other than their own inner demons. They were not ready to build sufficient consensus around the Constitutional amendment process they were seeking. They thought they could marshal, on their own, the two-thirds parliamentary majority required to amend the Constitution. They failed. And now they are blaming others for this failure.

They seem to live in a world of denials of reality and refusals to take responsibility for their decisions and actions.

Denial is a coping mechanism that gives one time to adjust to distressing situations — but staying in denial can interfere with one’s ability to tackle challenges.

If you’re in denial, you’re trying to protect yourself by refusing to accept the truth about something that’s happening in your affairs.In some cases, initial short-term denial can be a good thing, giving you time to adjust to a painful or stressful issue. It might also be a precursor to making some sort of change in your affairs. But denial has a dark side. Basic psychology teaches us that refusing to acknowledge that something is wrong is a way of coping with emotional conflict, stress, painful thoughts, threatening information and anxiety. You can be in denial about anything that makes you feel vulnerable or threatens your sense of control.

When you’re in denial, you won’t acknowledge a difficult situation.Refusing to face facts might seem unhealthy.

Sometimes, though, a short period of denial can be helpful. Being in denial gives your mind the opportunity to unconsciously absorb shocking or distressing information at a pace that won’t send you into a psychological tailspin.

For example, after a traumatic event, you might need several days or weeks to process what’s happened and come to grips with the challenges ahead.

You initially denied the distressing problem. But as your mind absorbed the possibility, you began to approach the problem more rationally and took action by seeking help.

But what if you had continued to be in denial? What if you never sought help? If denial persists and prevents you from taking appropriate action, it’s a harmful response.

When faced with an overwhelming turn of events, it’s okay to say, ‘I just can’t think about all of this right now.’ You might need time to work through what’s happened and adapt to new circumstances. But it’s important to realize that denial should only be a temporary measure — it won’t change the reality of the situation. Honestly examine what you fear.

Until you accept responsibility for your actions or failures, it’ll be very difficult for you to develop self-respect or even have the respect of others.

It’s a simple truth that all human beings make mistakes and poor choices. The same goes for when we fail to act when we know we should. There are times when we all look the other way when we know the right thing to do is to take helpful action.

The real difference between being responsible and being irresponsible is an indication of how effectively we’re managing our affairs when the opportunity to make a good or bad choice presents itself. Accepting responsibility is one of the most important factors in defining a person’s true character. When that responsible moment comes, what you do – or don’t do – is an indication of the type of person you really are.

Failing to accept personal responsibility may work to your advantage on occasion or in the short term. For example, you might get away with blaming someone else for your misdeeds. You might not face consequences for your wrong actions at the time. However, make no mistake about this, eventually this poor choice will catch up with you and, it’ll typically cause more pain for you down the road than if you had stepped up to the situation, took responsibility for it and honestly said, ‘I made a mistake.

‘When you blame others, you give up your power to change things, correct wrongs.

As we are witnessing with the rulers of our country today, over time, failing to accept responsibility has severe consequences. First and foremost, it has a devastating effect on your own mind and heart. When you know you have failed to take responsibility for something that you should, it’ll begin to bother you, to eat at you, little by little. Pretty soon, you’ll feel very small inside.

That may sound like an exaggeration, but it’s the truth. Taking responsibility for your own actions makes life work better. Remember, self-respect is the worth or value you place on yourself. Therefore, one of the consequences of continually failing to accept personal responsibility is that you eventually guarantee that you’ll view yourself as having little to no real value.

There’s a good chance that when you avoid accepting personal responsibility, someone will know that you’ve failed in this way. In other words, some other person may know that you’re responsible for the wrongdoing or poor choice, and when they see you fail to accept responsibility, they’ll lose all respect for you. If this happens on a frequent basis, you’ll never gain the respect of others that you hope to have one day.

Sometimes we don’t always see the long-term effects of our conduct. But, make no mistake, accepting responsibility is a major factor in receiving the respect and admiration of those around you. Accepting responsibility is not only the right thing to do, but it’ll pay more long-term dividends than you can now imagine.

And the choices we make are ultimately our own responsibility.

Clearly, the rulers of our country are caught in their own web of denials of reality and refusals to accept responsibility for their decisions and actions.

Fred M’membe

Mwika Royal Village, Chinsali

Africa twasebana!

Africa twasebana! Featured

Our President’s desire to change his official title to “President General” reminds us of the disgrace and humiliation the peoples of the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Malawi and Uganda had to endure under the dictators with unbridled ego that once ruled them.
Jean-Bédel Bokassa turned the Central African Republic into an empire and gave himself the title of “His Imperial Majesty Bokassa the First, Apostle of Peace and Servant of Jesus Christ, Emperor and Marshal of Central Africa”.
Joseph-Désiré Mobutu changed his name to Mobutu Sese Seko Kuku Ngbendu Wa Za Banga and that of his country to Zaire.
In 1971, Dr Hastings Kamuzu Banda made the legislature to declare him President for Life of Malawi. And his official title became “His Excellency the Life President of the Republic of Malaŵi, Ngwazi Dr. Hastings Kamuzu Banda.” The title Ngwazi means “chief of chiefs” – more literally, “great lion”, or, some would say, “conqueror” – in Chicheŵa.
And Ugandan dictator Idi Amin gave himself the official title of “His Excellency, President for Life, Field Marshal Al Hadji Doctor Idi Amin Dada, VC, DSO, MC, Lord of All the Beasts of the Earth and Fishes of the Seas and Conqueror of the British Empire in Africa in General and Uganda in Particular”.
We thought this was a long but permanent goodbye to this disgrace. Today we are starting to witness a rebirth of all this painful and shameful experience in Zambia.
Our President started with giving himself the honour of being called “Dr”. And now it’s “President General”! What’s next? And where will it end?
Niccolo Machiavelli wrote, “It is not titles that honour men, but men that honour titles.” He was right.
Changing our President’s title to President General won’t increase his ability to create impact.
A lousy President won’t get better just because his title has changed to “President General”.
He won’t become better by having a bigger title.
The ability to provide efficient, effective and orderly leadership is not directly correlated to a title.
However, our President wants to let a title define his identity, self-esteem, status, and more. He wants his fair share of recognition, identity and respect.
It seems he wants to turn a title into a currency.
Instead of using the title to facilitate work he wants to turn it into a bargaining chip.
But trying to use a title in this way creates toxicity rather than clarity.
This reminds us about what George Bernard Shaw once said, “Titles distinguish the mediocre, embarrass the superior, and are disgraced by the inferior.”
But people don’t follow titles of a leader, they follow performance and character.
When titles equal to power, changing them doesn’t help you at all; power will simply shift its form.
Having a bigger title doesn’t equal to better understanding.
We shouldn’t hide behind titles – the one we have or the ones we want.

Fred M’membe

Mwika Royal Village, Chinsali

Lies, dishonesty!

Lies, dishonesty! Featured

Dr Bwalya Ng’andu is not an everyday Zambian politician. And as such we don’t expect him to behave like them – telling lies everyday.

It is a big embarrassment that Dr Ng’andu lied to the nation about his engagement with Zambia’s bondholders only for them to issue a statement the following day that there had been no direct contact between them and the Zambian government.

Good political leadership is built on fundamental principles of honesty, fairness, accountability, responsibility and transparency.There’s need to ensure total transparency, openness and honesty in every respect of political leadership.

When honesty and transparency are lacking there can be no trust. You cannot cultivate a climate of trust in the absence of honesty. Consequently fairness, accountability and responsibility cannot exist.

Is a dishonest politician trustworthy, responsible and fair? Do they consider their accountability before being dishonest?Possibly yes, but in most instances no. Accountability is overlooked and lost.

We live in a low trust society. To ensure good governance we must first address the issues around trust and honesty.

The political leadership must be seen to be trustworthy and honest.

Political dishonesty not only harms a nation’s prosperity but also shapes the moral behavior of its citizens.

A shady political leadership influences the moral behavior of its followers.

By Fred M’membe

Mwika Royal Village, Chinsali