Niza Phiri: Results in Lubansenshi and Solwezi West proof of tribal politics

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Niza Phiri

Niza Phiri

Munali Constituency parliamentary hopeful, Niza Phiri, has charged that the results in the just ended Lubansenshi and Solwezi West by-elections are a clear indication of an internalised tribal mistrust in the country.

 

The Lubansenshi seat was won by the ruling PF’s George Mwamba, who polled 4,879, relegating the opposition UPND’s Patrick Mucheleka – who previously held the seat as an independent – into third place with 1,895 votes.

 

In Solwezi West, the UPND’s Teddy Kasonso resoundingly won the seat with 8,541, with the PF’s Martin Mbaya trailing in a distant second with 2,635 votes.

 

The two constituencies are in Northern and Northwestern provinces.

 

Commenting on the results in the two constituencies, Phiri wonders how one country, facing the same challenges, can have opposite results in two different regions. He points to tribalism as the logical explanation for the phenomenon.

 

“How can one country, facing the same challenges have such varying results? Why should there be such huge margins, opposite of each other in varying regions?” Phiri wondered. “After over 200 years of sharing this country, the deep mistrust between tribes still devides us.”

 

The youthful Phiri feels the Electoral Commission of Zambia is not doing enough to educate voters about the dangers of voting on tribal lines.

 

“It is the duty of the Electoral commission to educate voters about why they should cast their votes. the just ended By-Election shows that people are merely practising regional politics. In the same country, surely we should share similar sentiment about the state of affairs but why such variations?” Phiri said in a statement to Zambian Eye.

 

Phiri also wants the ECZ to show some bite and disqualify parties and candidates who engage in tribal campaigns.

 

“ECZ should create provisions to penalise political parties that campaign on tribal lines. Sentiment like “vote for your own” etc? I think candidates who issue such statements should be disqualified,” Phiri said.

 

“This type of attitude is very primitive and hinders development. If we continue down this path we are surely headed nowhere. People treat national issues like soccer, you support Arsenal or Chelsea through thick and thin… How many times have we heard statements like “tulemikolopa” or this party for life? This is the mentality ECZ should work at ridding the nation of. Because so far they are failing in their job. We cant continue down this path. The past by elections results are just shameful , and an indicator of the primitivity of our politics and governance systems.”

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13 Responses to Niza Phiri: Results in Lubansenshi and Solwezi West proof of tribal politics

  1. SATA BROUGHT TRIBAL POLITICS BY APPOINTING HIS RELATIVES IN STRATEGIC POSITIONS AND ALSO IN QUASI GOVERNMENT INSTITUTIONS. SHAMELESS ON EVIL SATA

    maguys
    September 25, 2015 at 9:45 am
    Reply

  2. Well said sir. My suggestion is let us incorporate federalism in our constitution. Because this current government has been encouraging this type of voting. Lungu was head saying wako ni wako in eastern province. So this barbaric type of voting is not going to stop any time soon. Let each province chart its own future but there should be a federal govrnment. let the federal government disburse funds equally and each province will decide through their elected leaders, know what to do with the money. That way Zambia will be able to move forward.

    China
    September 25, 2015 at 9:51 am
    Reply

    • Federalism is the way to go but remember all this tribalism we are talking about and experiencing is all about “kudya masuku on other peoples’ heads” (exploitation of a tribe (s) by another tribe (s)) and so it would be rejected instantly. It is a deliberate system that has been made formal since Sata ruled. Evidence: look at the so called unprecedented development e.g. where two universities are being built in the former president’s home town when provinces which by far contribute to the national coffers are being ignored. It is the same like what is happening on the global level where the global financial/ economic system is made in such a way as to exploit Africa for its resources. No matter what you do, you work for the west selling your resources at their fixed price and also offering them cheap labour. The Zambian system has been revolving between north and east except when Chiluba made a mistake and gave it to Mwanawasa (and you see that LPM is hailed as the best president ever).

      What Goes Around.......
      September 25, 2015 at 10:29 am
      Reply

  3. Great statement. Its such a shame to hear the level of tribalism in Zambia. Yet Lungu is calling for national fasting and prayer to solve economic problems.

    Blago
    September 25, 2015 at 9:58 am
    Reply

  4. Fred Mmembe should apologise to the nation for supporting a tribal regime that has totally polarised the nation. If it hadn’t been for Fred Mmembe, Michael Sata, a known tribalist would not have become president to polarise the nation. But it is good that their baby the PF is eating them alive with his friend Wynter Kabimba. They may even die of depression soon if PF continues post 2016 elections. God really is no respecter of persons and can never be mocked. Recognise!

    What Goes Around.......
    September 25, 2015 at 10:15 am
    Reply

  5. Failure of PF can be felt by all Zambians. The economy is biting but for some people it is all roses. Chama Davies believes Edgar Lungu has done far much better than MC Sata in the period he had been in the office. But us Zambians we are saying that Edgar Lungu should resign to pave way for Hakainde Hichilema who seem to be more focused on developmental issues. The corruption and intimidation in Lubasenshi led to PF win election.

    Mainza
    September 25, 2015 at 10:26 am
    Reply

  6. MAINZA KIKIKIKIKIKIKI, How do you pave a way for HH while people are still exercising regional politics.

    ,
    September 25, 2015 at 11:21 am
    Reply

  7. Solwezi is not Tonga nor in Bantu Botatwe but the people there are very analytical and wise calling a spade a spade. They were not happy with Sata because he used to insult them, and now they loath lungu because he has crippled the economy and has made several false promises to them. I think if many Zambians were analytical we could liberate ourselves. Unfortunately in these just past elections people of Luwingu voted for PF as a party because they believe it is a bemba party. Further still the K100s which Pf ministers and father bwalya were dishing out swayed the decision to line with an evil party which is fast killing Zambia.

    jameson
    September 25, 2015 at 1:50 pm
    Reply

  8. How is it tribal politics? Both Kasonso and Mbaya the short idiot are Kaondes…All the candidates in Lubansenshi were Bemba…
    You are STUPID Mr author

    kwasha
    September 25, 2015 at 3:30 pm
    Reply

  9. Kwasha – Sorry for your strong language. In this case it is “regionalism”. But the young author is still very raw – giving an example of English football teams clearly shows absence of an analytical mind appealing in the eyes of the electorate. He needs to learn to gauge his statements.

    Adviser
    September 26, 2015 at 4:10 am
    Reply

  10. I find Phiri’s conclusion that the results of the two constituency bye-elections held in Solwezi West and Lubasenshi could only be explained on tribal grounds as ill-informed and unfortunate. As a North Westerner I will not pretend to know much about Lubaseshi, but I feel very strongly that I can argue on behalf of my province.

    To hold the view that the landslide win of the UPND in Solwezi West was tribal is an insult to North Westerners. I was in Solwezi West during the campaigns and I can confidently say that tribe was not an issue rather the people held the view that North Western Province has been sidelined in terms of development by PF and by even previous governments.Whether this sentiment is true or not is another issue. But one has to just drive from Chingola to Solwezi to understand the view of most North Westerners. I for one feel that North Western province, perhaps the richest province in Zambia in terms of natural resources, is the least developed province in Zambia. Someone should explain to North Westerners how the PF government could justify the building of two universities in one province and not consider building the road between Solwezi and Chingola? We believe that only UPND has the answer to the plight of North Westerners and not just North Westerners but the entire Zambia.

    What I witnessed was a protest vote against a government that has done little in North Western and Solwezi West in particular and against a government that is brutal in its unbridled desire to hang on to power! I witnessed the Zambian Police firing tear gas in order to stop UPND from holding a lawful meeting. The police action was uncalled for and only reinforced the strong sentiments against PF.

    UPND is not a party of Lundas and Kaondes (the two tribes mostly dominant in Solwezi West), how then does tribe come in?

    Let me conclude by paraphrasing the sentiment of one Lunda man who said during the campaigns ” We claim to be a rich province; copper and other rich minerals are dug out of our land and carried away in huge trucks and ALL that is left for us is DUST!”.

    Chikeji Njolomba
    September 26, 2015 at 11:41 am
    Reply

  11. Yes hat the behaviour of jemasn coz he preches tribalis

    mulenga
    September 26, 2015 at 8:05 pm
    Reply

  12. Phiri missed a point and to me he was better silent on this one as there were no issues of tribalism especially for Solwezi which is Metropolitan.

    moyo dingaani
    November 2, 2015 at 1:23 pm
    Reply

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