By Scoop Reporter
THERE is need for national consensus through a free and fair democratic election, respect for civil liberties, for any country to attain meaningful development and progress, United Party for National Development (UPND) president Hakainde Hichilema has said.
“Citizens will appreciate that for any country, to attain meaningful development and progress, there has to be national consensus through a free and fair democratic election, respect for civil liberties, an independent judiciary, a free press and profound and unflinching respect for the rule of law.
“Our founding fathers and mothers led by Kenneth Kaunda optimised diversity as an equaliser to national unity, resulting in the principle of ‘One Zambia One Nation’, the concept that superintended our nationhood,” Mr. Hichilema said.
He says his Government will therefore strongly recognise regional diversity as a key component in the running of public affairs.
He says in this regard, public officers including ministers will comprise a balanced reflection of his party’s diversity but guided by the principle of meritocracy, outside partisan and sectarian interests.
“As the current constitution stipulates, these will be drawn from a pool of MPs elected or nominated, but based on their unique skills and qualifications. There are no predetermined names at this time until the elective processes are completed.
“There will be no discrimination founded on the outdated ways that segregate and divide based on people’s regional origins. Rather, the major concern will be political cadres with no requisite qualifications, but have been placed on payrolls of various government and parastatal institutions, just to draw salaries at the expense of qualified citizens within these organisations, and ordinary citizens countrywide.
“Every Zambian will have a part to play in nation building and no citizen will be left behind,” he said.