In 2017, it should not be business as usual – Minister Kalaba

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Harry Kalaba

Foreign Affairs Minister Harry Kalaba new year message:


Happy 2017,

As we prepare to start a brand-new year tomorrow, I wish to reflect on leadership as promised in my first article. And I wish to do so in honour of my late father Mr. Simon Chisha Harry Kalaba who served as Bahati MP for 17 years from 1974 to 1991 and from whom I learnt an unforgettable lesson that leadership is at best a lonely endeavour. No matter how big your team, sometimes it’s just about you. You are all you have, meaning that at some critical moments, all you need is to look inside yourself for motivation and inspiration in order for you to be able to inspire others to be the best they could be. This is the grand calling of every leader. When Jesus showed up at Peter’s boat and asked him to follow him, it appears like Peter was too careless to abandon his business, his career and his way of life to follow a stranger on a mission he didn’t even understand. But the Bible says he told Peter that “I will make you a fisher of men”. In short, Jesus showed Peter a vision of the next big thing in his life and therein lies the great undertone that defines and distinguishes great leaders.

As we enter 2017, It should not be business as usual. We need to search within ourselves as a nation and begin to demand excellence at both private and government levels. Tolerating mediocrity and laziness should be frowned upon and internalised through self-reflection. When Patrice Lumumba rose to make a life changing speech on Congo’s Independence Day, a speech that eventually even led to his violent death 7 months later, he had nowhere else to search for courage and inspiration except to consult his conscious and immerse himself in the abyss of self.

A leader isn’t someone who forces others to make him look stronger; a leader is someone willing to give his strength to others that they may have the strength to stand on their own. I am reminded of the words of Nelson Mandela who once said: “A leader…is like a shepherd. He stays behind the flock, letting the nimblest go out ahead, whereupon the others follow, not realizing that all along they are being directed from behind.” A good leader has wisdom enough to pick good men to do what he wants done, and self-restraint to keep from meddling with them while they do it. In this regard, Leadership success at the highest level comes down to one question: ‘Can you make the choice that your happiness can actually come from someone else’s success?

I know for sure that positive feedback is always easy to take but a true leader knows that the day the men under you stop bringing you their problems is the day you stop leading them. They have either lost confidence that you can help them or concluded that you do not care. Either case is a failure of leadership. As leaders, we need to be tolerant to negative feedback and you as the led need not relent in criticizing us when necessary. A man who wants to lead the Choir must learn how to turn his back on the crowd. He must learn to trust that the crowd will always have his back covered, therefore, my people, bring your observations to our attention.

Anyone can find it easy to take people where they want to go. But a great leader takes people where they don’t necessarily want to go, but where they need to be. Average leaders raise the bar on themselves; good leaders raise the bar for others; but i have learnt that great leaders inspire others to raise their own bar. I therefore, have a strong desire to lead people who are not demoralized by my mood but who have the audacity to look at aggregates and never wait for me to tell them what is wrong.

The crowing virtue of leadership is genuine humility. He who is down to earth fears no fall. There is no place below the ground to fall to. Thus, humility is a great asset. As a matter of fact, there is nothing about a man whose breath is though the nostrils to be proud about. When you put everything you do in God’s hands, you will surely see God’s hand in everything you do.

Have a prosperous year ahead.


8 Responses to In 2017, it should not be business as usual – Minister Kalaba

  1. Well written, but it sounds like a campaign gymmick.However there is one correction to be made.In military it is believed and is a known custom that leaders should command from the front.

    January 1, 2017 at 5:02 pm

  2. Kalaba is Foreign Affairs Minister so he should tell the Nation why the State Visit to Egypt was cancelled, why did the King of Morocco cancel his visit to Zambia. Kabila of DRC, Jammeh of Gambia have refused to handover power. In Gambia Jammeh has petetioned the Election of Adama Harrow,the President Elect. That Petetion is b4 a Panel of 5 Supreme Court Judges of Gambia and the Hearing of the Petition has been set for 10th of January 2017. Jammeh has insisted that its his Constitutional Right to be heard in Court.So why are HH & GBM’s Rights to be heard in Zambia being violated? Kalaba should tell the Nation why in Zambia his Boss has blocked the Hearing of the UPND Petition. Why? Does the illegitimate Lungu support Kabila in DRC for clinging on to power illegally? Does he support Jammeh’s clinging on to powerin Gambia even though he lost the Election to Adama Harrow? Why is Kabala’s boss not prepared to prove in Court how he won the 2016 Presidential Election and how HH & GBM lost the Election. Lungu is hiding something otherwise by now he would have vindicated himself in Court.

    January 1, 2017 at 5:19 pm

  3. @Mweene, you have raised pertinent questions which, not only Harry Kalaba but Edgar Lungu himself ought to answer if the PF has to be recognized as the bona fine winner of the August 11, 2016, Zambian elections, otherwise Lungu and his Administration are stealing Zambian money through the salaries they are now drawing.

    January 2, 2017 at 10:23 am

  4. i recall egypt had terrorist issues around that time.
    further hh and gbm when they petition, they maintain their status just like in gambia where the status is expected to be maintained.

    January 3, 2017 at 10:37 am

  5. Lungu in his New Year Message claimed that the 2016 Elections in Zambia were “successful”. With a Presidential Petition in Court, the Elections were fiercely disputed and remain so. The handling of the Presidential Petition will determine the direction of Zambia’s Foreign Policy in 2017. The International Community perceive Lungu as an Election Fraudster and therefore illegitimate.Western Financial Institutions will not assist an illegitimate Regime. Is Kalaba and his Boss going to Hear the Petition and dispose it in 2017? Without this, Kalaba should expect further isolation and possible sanctions in 2017 unless and until the Petition is resolved.Kalaba should observe carefully events as they unfold in Gambia. Jammeh has no choice but to negotiate his Exit and possibly he will be given some immunity from prosecution. The Gambia Supreme Court (GSC) will Hear Jammeh’s Petition next Tuesday, 10th January 2017 and Rule that inspite of some Election malpractices the President Elect,Adama Harrow won the Election or Order a quick recount which will confirm that Harrow won the Election. The GSC will then proceed to declare Adama Harrow the Winner and the New President of Gambia. If the GSC can hear Jammeh’s Petition why are Courts refusing to hear HH & GBM’s Petition in Zambia? SADC and AU will force Lungu and his Courts to Hear and dispose off the Petition. At law Justice delivery is more important than time expiry. Zambian Concourt should have heard the Petitioners without fear,favour and preducice but it failed to do so.2017 Will open a Pandora’s Box for Kalaba, Lungu and Zambia. Watch this space!!

    January 3, 2017 at 11:57 am

  6. Bushman kalaba, atampa ukubuka nomba. Shut up!

    John kabengele
    January 4, 2017 at 3:41 am

  7. There are leaders and there are those who lead. Leaders are appointed to carry out a function. Those who lead believe in something passionately and attract others to their cause. This set of words by this Minister is all aggrandizement and a groping in the dark. Go forth and LEAD!!!

    January 4, 2017 at 10:09 am

  8. Talk is cheap, achievements count. In so far, same sh1t, same package

    January 6, 2017 at 8:38 am

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