Sata’s political experience has failed to inspire Zambians

Filed under: Editor's Choice |

By Given Mutinta 

Zambians who are privileged to have been around for some time know that President Michael Chilufya Sata will next year, 2013 celebrate 50 years of being in active politics.

He is a veteran, an old hand with loads of political experience. This is one attribute that cannot be taken away from him.

Sata’s political vocation started in 1963. His first high-ranking public office assignment was as Governor of Lusaka under the United National Independence Party (UNIP).

Then he became a Member of Parliament (MP) for Kabwata constituency in Lusaka.

In 1991, during the crusade for multi-party politics Sata dumped UNIP and joined the Movement for Multiparty Democracy (MMD).

Following the defeat of a long-time President Kenneth Kaunda by Frederick Chiluba, Sata became one of the leaders to revive in the political limelight.

Under the Chiluba regime, he served as Minister for Local Government, Labour and Social Security, and Health in that order. Later, he was appointed as Minister without Portfolio.

After Chiluba endorsed Levy Mwanawasa as his successor, this action drove Sata around the bend and went into opposition in 2001, forming the Patriotic Front (PF) party.

He contested the 2001, 2006, and 2008 presidential elections respectively, and lost.

Last year, 2011, he competed for the presidency for a fourth time.

Aware that he was the most experienced presidential runner, he used this privilege as one of his persuasive campaign tickets.

Consequently, some people fell for his ornate political experience. He was ‘vitriolic’ in his campaigns. Openly, he trumpeted himself as the highly experienced of all presidential aspirants.

He scornfully dubbed other presidential candidates as ‘amateurs’. It was Sata who disdainfully labelled Hakainde Hichilema (HH) as an ‘under five’ politician, a way of marketing his candidature on the basis of his political experience.

Sata won the elections receiving about 43% of the vote. His long political experience significantly contributed to his triumph and flying up of people’s social, economic, and political expectations.

However, one year down the line, his political experience has failed to inspire Zambians. He has disappointingly failed to give a lift to our economy from where MMD left it. As a result, the country is socially, economically, and politically striding back.

This will impact negatively on the growth and development that Zambia gained under the MMD regime. Unless an urgent measure is put in place, our country is going to the dead.

Countrymen and women, where is Sata’s 50 years of political experience to save our country? What is the value of political experience if it cannot be employed to instigate important conditions of good governance and democracy critical in national development?

As it is now, Sata’s style of leadership is hostile, and unfriendly to conditions that exert a pull on foreign direct investment, global community trust, and thriving economic environment for growth.

His failure to exhibit inspirational leadership confirms the fact that political experience alone is not sufficient to effectively run a country if not melded with formal education.

Sata’s challenges to successfully run the country should serve as a ‘mind opener’ to the public. There is need to rise above tribalism and regionalism so as to choose leaders with book-learning or propositional knowledge among other qualities.

What would be the cause of Sata’s lack of the expected coherency of political life’s experiences in spite of being a political old-timer?

In part, it is lack of formal education to round out his many years of political experience.

Personally, I admire his political experience. However, the fact that it is not secured with formal education it cannot make him to bring about the needed national development.

Today, the people Sata mockingly put a label on as ‘amateurs’ or ‘under five’ look cutting-edge in understanding the problems affecting our country and how they can be tackled

Can we be right to say his political experience is ‘ornamental’ or out-of-date?

It cannot be overstated that knowledge of politics gained through involvement in or exposure to politics alone cannot make one a good leader the country needs in this day and age, and neither can it be a substitute for formal education.

In as much as political experience is desired, formal education; at least a diploma or a first professional degree is indispensable as it is thinking itself. Thinking opens the doors to our mind and makes us receptive to broadening our horizons and learning new things.

Thus, formal education is one of the sure ways we can have knowledge, skills, mind, and character to gainfully lead others.

How can a person reason otherwise? Politically experienced and formally educated leaders stand better chances of setting specific goals and managing their country towards the achievement of national goals.

Frankly, it is irrational for people to be expecting development from leaders whose only assets are experiences. How can such leaders help people trust their judgment on national issues?

Thus, Sata is struggling to run the country because his political experience alone is not enough for him to intelligently engage in economic and political forms of reasoning to deal with a catalogue of issues affecting our country.

Simply put, political experience unaided with formal education cannot make a leader to be in touch with the present reality, build opinions, and capably interpret them correctly.

The best way political experience acquired through norms and values learned outside the context of formal schools can be used is to pair it with formal education. These two can broaden people’s intellectual landscape and a way forward to greater economic, social, and political illumination, and eventually to development.

Lastly, kudos to the Zambian Watchdog; the voice for the voiceless, the eye for the blind, and the ear for the deaf! Your hope, struggle, and hard work towards a better nation for all will be part of your rewards! Best Wishes!

Comments Closed

60 Responses to Sata’s political experience has failed to inspire Zambians

  1. Well written article but just one cardinal point of correction.
    Yes, Sata’s political life may span 50 years, but the first 15 years or so where on the other side as an “INFORMER” for the colonialists.
    Immediately after independence, Sata was whisked out of Zambia by his British masters for fear of reprisals against him by the many Freedom Fighters he had reported on. Some had even been killed on account of his actions.
    Because of his education (or lack of it as the case was/is), the only job he could do while in the UK was sweeping the train stations (known as the tube).
    He only returned to Zambia in the 70s after his uncle Alexander Chikwanda had successfully negotiated/pleaded for his return with KK and secured a commitment of safety.
    Zambians, we warned you; know your leaders before you put them in charge of your lives.
    I end here.

    Terry Boy - December 31, 2012
    20:46

  2. Zambia’s (electorate) naivety has landed us into such a CATASTROPHIC situation. All we have are just con-men who have won themselves fortunes for their families at the expense of Zambia’s economic development. If SATA was president in the early 70s his style of leadership would probably have won him praises but certainly not this age. “Ubulimi bwakale tabutalalika mwana,”goes the Bemba saying” Paraphrased ” Yesteryear’s glories do not feed a hungry baby to day. Agreeing with the author of the article the so called experience of Sata is only for himself and his family and friends the rest of the ZAMBIANS will be worse off than a year ago. All we are waiting for is the down grading of the country from lower middle income to the least or poorest in Africa. The zeal without a vision is the same if not worse than having non.

    Kelvin Mweemba - December 31, 2012
    14:24

  3. Zambia’s (electorate) naivety has landed us into such a CATASTROPHIC situation. All we have are just con-men who have won themselves fortunes for their families at the expense of Zambia’s economic development. If SATA was president in the early 70s his style of leadership would probably have won him praises but certainly not this age. “Ubulimi bwakale tabutalalika mwana,”goes the Bemba saying” Paraphrased ” Yesteryear’s glories do not feed a hungry baby to day. Agreeing with the author of the article the so called experience of Sata is only for himself and his family and friends the rest of the ZAMBIANS will be worse off than a year ago. All we are waiting for is the down grading of the country from lower middle income to the least or poorest in Africa. The zeal without a vision is the same as having non.

    Kelvin Mweemba - December 31, 2012
    14:02

  4. Experience bring good judgment. If you cant make good judgment then your experience is theoretical.

    Vilifier - December 31, 2012
    13:42

  5. What kind of experience does he have? Organising thugs to beat up opponents? Experience to hound out potential opponents from the party? That is not the experience needed to run a country!

    Ulemu ni Wabwino - December 31, 2012
    13:20

  6. I have failed indeed…

    H.E Sata - December 31, 2012
    13:10

  7. Mutinta is right. there is a strong relationship btwn education and experience for any1 lukng 2 b a gud leader. Education depends on the theories but experience is based on practical application. From my point of view experience and education are the extremely important to reach achievement and high quality in leadership. unfortunately, Sata has completely nothing in terms of education – really nothing – illiterate – empty!

    Sanjobo - December 31, 2012
    13:03

  8. this Given Muleya, a lecturer at UNZA in the school of Humanities and Social Sciences. He is typical Tonga,typical UPND and typically BITTER about us being in GOvernment. Wait for 2030 when HH is president, you will be appointed PS.

    Chifubu dweller - December 31, 2012
    13:01

    • And you are chifubu dweller typicaly pf cadre,tribal and bitter

      suggestor - December 31, 2012
      13:36

    • Bitter is the only argument on the PF’s mind

      Vilifier - December 31, 2012
      13:38

  9. exactly what we have always advocated for ..get edcuated leaders not people like cycle m,ata ..we are under trouble becoz of his inexpereince in education..

    Sheebah - December 31, 2012
    12:46

  10. GOOD ARTICLE MUTINTA

    Why Tongas? - December 31, 2012
    11:56

  11. Nice article Mutinta, Keep it up. How can we be inspired by Ukwa, a grade 7 failure?

    Fringstone - December 31, 2012
    11:03

  12. PF beat MMD, which no opposition would have done such. The people who wrote the pf mafesto were intelligent and educated. (most of its drivers maybe dull) Lets not lie that we were cheated. Most of us we believed in them, its only that things are not as we thought. The current opposition leaders just talk on manifestos which they never wrote. The advantage they have is education. Once we get united we can change things. Our forefathers without much education fought for independence. We can also do it.

    chileshe matekenya - December 31, 2012
    10:35

  13. i campaigned for Mr. Sata in 1983 in chilenje, Timothy Mwanakatwe and may areas kabwata constituency and he finished Mr. Sibongo who had a shop right their in chilenje and he was his opponent under the same UNIP party and its government. I know him every well. I am very worried is not performing the way he used to be 30 years ago. I think he grown old. he needs to be supervised

    chanda chimba the truth - December 31, 2012
    10:26

    • As an experienced person as i assume, is Sata in a position to be supervised as you are suggesting? The answer is straight NO. He is full of himself and illiteracy. He has acreated an economic gap with is poor leadership.

      Luchembe - December 31, 2012
      10:56

    • the truth is sata is in bondage of mmbembe,kk ..etc.mr president the truth will set you free.free your self from these thugs and allow the nation to hung around you.

      ftj - December 31, 2012
      11:22

  14. one year of rb under the global melt down was much better than one year of sata, fact……………….

    pawato - December 31, 2012
    10:21

  15. The whole crop of so called ‘experienced’ leaders need to be got rid off. All they are experienced in is enriching themselves, poor management skills, and self preservation. Its time for a new generation of leaders. Next election please do not vote for anyone over 50!

    Rikki Tarr - December 31, 2012
    10:20

    • Yes, this so called ‘experienced generation’ should go. They have outlived their usefulness and are a menance to democracy and development. We are tired of these veterans for nothing. They failed create wealth for themselves in the past and today want to amass wealth at the expense of the people. Zambians save yourselves!

      Luchembe - December 31, 2012
      10:42

  16. Zambians are hard to please..this takes me back to the time of Mwanawasa, we yapped and complained in all languages called our president cabbage and so forth all in one year. But when we started ripping the fruits that he had sowed for the benefit of all Zambians, we loved him. i remember the dollar coming down to K 3,500 KR 3.50, i remember corruption levels going nearly to zero which we did not see when he was just sworn in.My point is Yes we might call him cabbage or a dictator but lets not talk too much his pace is not our pace no leader is perfect he still has 4 more years to go,let him execute his plans one at a time whats the rush.

    Draculla - December 31, 2012
    10:03

  17. I have known the old man for a long time now. No one will hoodwink me to change my mind. The man is a dictator and a know-it-all type of person. Iam not surprised at whats happening pa zed. Brace for worse times friends!

    Mubanga - December 31, 2012
    09:44

  18. Delegation, delegation, delegation.
    Sata is more educated than Chiluba.
    It is not Sata who is the problem, it is the people he is appointing. Sata is making the same mistakes as KK made, by appointing inept people just because they are ‘loyal.’ Loyalty being defined as Family.

    THE SAINT - December 31, 2012
    09:31

    • But it is Sata who is choosing those leaders you are saying are a problem. Why can’t he use his experience to choose good leaders? The fact that he is choosing illiterate leaders simply reflects who he is-illiterate. He has failed to translate his experience into good leadership. I also feel his experience is irrelevant or outdated to be of any use as many people are saying. What were we thinking to vote for such a clown – this is Zambia’s worst nightmare.

      Sara - December 31, 2012
      10:36

  19. Fools like KK at one time said Sata was not presidential material now the old man thinks otherwise. Some of us have known the man Sata is is uneducated, an ex convict and a crook. Much of his political experience was under one party nonsense which really is nothing to write home about.He is a shrewd crook and a thief. During the struggle for independence he was a colonial govt. informer before he was cashiered from the Northen Rhodesia police and sent to jail for theft.So do not expect anything from him. In fact he is not one of the founder members of MMD, he stuck to UNIP like tick when real and brainy men like the late Lumina,Mulemba,Ben Mwiinga stood up to the despot KK and UNIP when Sata could not give up his state minister positiion till the last minute when it was apparent that UNIP was history. Point of correction Sata became MP then Governor and eventually state Minister.

    kenjay - December 31, 2012
    09:19

  20. Indeed political experience can only be valuable in a ‘constant’, not when social and economic trends are as dynamic as they are in emerging markets and economies. Political experience also assumes that the exposure and education of all demographics remain unchanged. It is as redundant today in actually governing and bringing about the much needed economic growth, as the dangerous dimwits who overrate it.

    trader - December 31, 2012
    09:16

    • Trader you are indeed spot on and I would lke to re- christen thee “critical Aanalyst”

      ZED GENIUS - December 31, 2012
      09:53

    • @ Trader, you are dead right with your analytical review. That is as it should be. Unfortunately our youthful friends who were hoodwinked by Sata do not possess the analytical mind that you have displayed. Ask a Kaponya on the street what positive changes PF has brought about, you will be answered “debasing bakaamba”.

      Chambeshi Metals - December 31, 2012
      12:00

  21. PEOPLE LET US BE TRUTHFUL PF UNDER THE LEADERSHIP OF UKWA HAS BROUGHT MORE DEVELOPMENT SUCH AS:
    1. WASTING TAX PAYERS MONEY
    2. FIRING EDUCATED PEOPLE
    3. HIRING CADRES
    4. CAUSING BY- ELECTIONS
    5. NOKWENDA SANA ABENA KA KABIMBA, SOKENI, CHIMBWILI,and
    6. DETAINING OPPOSITION LEADERS

    WATCH OUT FOR PART TWO, WERE YOUR CITIZENSHIP WILL SUSPENDED.

    simska - December 31, 2012
    09:07

    • Nice one!

      Situmbeko - January 1, 2013
      17:26

  22. Are the Cadres and the ministers in PF not hearing of the Dictatorship comments every where in the community? I am wondering to see what is happening when they say no we are not dictators.

    “Apakomaila inondo pali ubulema”. Please PF 2013 begin it on a good note or else the same people you are using are the same people who sha take you out faster.

    SEMEKI - December 31, 2012
    09:07

  23. SATA WAS A CONSTABLE AND A SELLOUT IN THE COLONIAL REGIME.

    THAT IS THE REASON WHY HE ONLY UNDERSTANDS & SUPPORTS THE POA.

    Mpangula Mputyu - December 31, 2012
    09:03

  24. Does Sata’s performance in this 1 yr and some months give assurance or confidence that Zambia is on the right track and come 2016 Zambia will have made great strides in economic and social development? The answer is no, he hasn’t inspired any confidence at all. And we are seeing the direction of Sata’s experience. It is that of dictatorship, oppressing others and one that has appetite for single partysm, one party statism which is very dangerous. Sata is very experienced yes, but his political experience is irrelevant to Zambia. In fact, it is detrimental to Zambia’s national development.

    Bob - December 31, 2012
    08:59

  25. Spot on. Its only the blind who can refuse the fact that this PF government is taking this country backward. The worst is yet to come. This is just the begining bad things. God help.

    Ben - December 31, 2012
    08:52

  26. He’s our own choice,we chose the Pabwato deceitful way,donchi kubeba. We must walk this way whatever so.After the long tiresome walk,I ‘ve a dream that will begin to vividly distinguish between tribalism and development. Voting for your tribesman does not mean development,next time help us take Zambia Forward on the next Polling Day please?

    Ndilanga buyo - December 31, 2012
    08:34

  27. President Sata has just been in office just for a year and a few months. Give him time and he will change this country for the better. How do you judge someone within a year of being a president?

    Chileshe - December 31, 2012
    08:33

    • Does Sata’s performance in this 1 yr and some months give assurance or confidence that Zambia is on the right track and come 2016 Zambia will have made great strides in economic and social development? The answer is no, he hasn’t inspired any confidence at all. And we are seeing the direction of Sata’s experience. It is that of dictatorship, oppressing others and one that has appetite for single partysm, one party statism which is very dangerous. Sata is very experienced yes, but his political experience is irrelevant to Zambia. In fact, it is detrimental to Zambia’s national development.

      Bob - December 31, 2012
      08:56

      • Spot on! I couldn’t hae said it better!

        Weeping Willow - January 1, 2013
        10:57

    • Ichikwanka bachimwena kumampalanya that is what the Bemba say. I think 2013 must come with good plans. PF has fumbled for the last one year and some months. Time is running. Giving ample time in governance must go with plans which are specific and have direction. But if people are seeing ones plans as not taking them anywhere, they become skeptical and doubt where you are going. We need to see to it that PF takes us somewhere and development is done evenly.

      Semuel - December 31, 2012
      08:58

    • I though the PF had given people 90 days, after which they were ready to be judged. What did u see after 90 days?

      The Observer - December 31, 2012
      13:05

  28. No Zambian will stand up and say dictator sata has done anything in the one year he has been in office. I agree with the article, that lack of education on dictator sata is the reason he can not initiate anything developmental. Congo DR with its civil war has developed much far better in the last one year compared to Zambia. Kabila is educated. This Dictator CNP has only been successful in applying the POA because that is he is capable of just like any dictator.
    Zambians be realistic and demand for proper leadership.

    Sansakuwa Chikala - December 31, 2012
    08:26

    • I like your last line, “Zambians be realistic and demand for proper leadership.”

      Situmbeko - December 31, 2012
      08:37

  29. Its has now become embarrassing to be Zambian. A country with a village illiterate as a president

    TheEngineer (Australia( - December 31, 2012
    08:22

  30. Calling a spade a spade…… the guy is too illiterate to be a president period

    TheEngineer (Australia( - December 31, 2012
    08:20

  31. Bakolwe, mwaikuta mu pf mwayamba nokusabaila,ngamwalifwa.

    bauer - December 31, 2012
    08:19

    • Twalelya bwino mu MMD. We never died so what would have made us die this time around? PF is a failure as a party. That is why anyone intelligent is connected to UPND by the PF hierarchy. Only people like you see hope in PF otherwise any neutral and well meaning Zambian just see disaster in PF. We still have four years under this chaos and my heart bleeds to imagine that this gullible party will still hold on to power.

      Mamen - December 31, 2012
      08:54

  32. You are just a ka loser iwe ka mufana

    Pilato7 - December 31, 2012
    08:18

  33. You @Robyfast, please tell us what Sata has achieved in 1 & quarter years he’s been in power. Is naming of districts & re-basing of our currency qualified to be called development? Don’t just bring HH in this. Tell us what Sata has achieved. It seems the only thing which makes you support Sata is your hatred for HH & his tribe.

    REASON - December 31, 2012
    08:09

  34. Sata has nothing to offer,he is taking us back egypt we need a leader who can take to canaan land ! Abash PF

    mizon siwale - December 31, 2012
    08:08

  35. Imagine in this day and age choosing an illiterate CEO of a company simply because he has experience. This is a proper joke! What we did on Sept 20, 2011 is embarrassing. It really brings an emotional state of intense discomfort to be a proud Zambian. Until 2016 a clown will be sleeping and waking up from state house.

    Sara - December 31, 2012
    08:05

  36. Given zonda uzalema.

    Map - December 31, 2012
    07:59

    • You are a pretender noko amalepe,you are just hit and dismembered by the amount
      of praise given is receiving on this accurate article.your ghost in state house wont last
      give him upto next june when hunger creeps in due to agriculture mismanagement
      he will run together with splinter kapimpa,not even mugabe tactics will work

      john kabatisha - December 31, 2012
      12:10

  37. imwe bantu imwe silu ni silu no matter the experience. A madman’s experience is madness. you support him, he gets mad. you oppose, he gets mad. you honor him, he gets mad. you tell him anything, his response is hallucinations like: Gold stolen, Fake money in circulation, rebels recruited in Lukulu, public order act good, 90 days, ACC need permission to work, millers are exploiting poor people, army worms are a gift from God, our cadre was killed by opposition cadres in Rufunsa, Nevers Mumba is a jail master,etc. TOTAL MADNESS!

    silu ni silu - December 31, 2012
    07:45

  38. silu ni silu no matter the experience. A madman’s experience is madness. you support him, he gets mad. you oppose, he gets mad. you honor him, he gets mad. you tell him anything, his response is hallucinations like: Gold stolen, Fake money in circulation, rebels recruited in Lukulu, public order act good, 90 days, ACC need permission to work, millers are exploiting poor people, army worms are a gift from God, our cadre was killed by opposition cadres in Rufunsa, Nevers Mumba is a jail master,etc. TOTAL MADNESS!

    silu ni silu - December 31, 2012
    07:44

  39. The dictator is taking the country 20 years back. Some thing extra ordinary must be done now.

    The mazoka massacre - December 31, 2012
    07:40

  40. Given U ar jst one of the frustrated chaps bcoz be HH lost. 4 u sata has done nothing and will do nothing 2 impress u. I 4give U bcoz u may be reality blind.

    robyfast - December 31, 2012
    07:26

    • Chikala tell us what and PF have achieved…. Don’t just support blindly just because u wasted your vote…. Idiot…..

      Roué - December 31, 2012
      07:43

    • u fool call a spade a spade, how many youths are in employment, people are losing their jobs just becose of this satana. unless u are telling me that the creation of new districts is more mony in pipo’s pockets, u idiot, for yo own information districts are created for cadres like u.

      simska - December 31, 2012
      08:52

  41. Viva zwd,viva Mutinta n viva Upnd

    Bishop - December 31, 2012
    07:19

  42. Chimbwi No Plan!

    Kolwe No Plan - December 31, 2012
    07:16