Leadership has no degrees

by Mazuba Mwiinga

The people we so often ask to represent us in national forums on the basis that they are educated and have the moral integrity to stand on moral grounds no matter what may come; most often of late, have ended up slipping off the balance of their intellectualism and integrity and followed the whims of those with cash in their bags.

Since this degree debate was served on our political table here in Zambia, I have been wondering why the so called delegates to the NCC would go that low in their thinking as to sweat their faces shamelessly and agree that one needs a degree to aspire as president of this country.

Laughably enough, it is this same NCC that a while ago rejected the 50% + 1 votes clause for one to be declared a presidential winner in an election. Now, for heaven’s sake; which of the two areas builds integrity to the well-fare of the people and to the tenets of democracy; a popular president (50% + 1) yet with no degree or a Degree holder yet with a minority government under the current simple majority rule?

Is this not yet another comedy of errors, where we are seeing most of our ‘learned’ NCC delegates leaning on clauses that are there just to humiliate people’s wishes rather than constructing a Constitution that will serve this country’s future generations without any biases whatsoever.

Leadership is all about integrity, wisdom, patriotism, tolerance, dialogue and understanding to mention but just a few traits. And when you look at the above traits, none is learnt in text book lessons, but they all earned through human interaction and experience of life.

According to Ann Marie E. McSwain, Assistant Professor at Lincoln University, “leadership is about…..the capacity…..to listen and observe, to use (your) expertise as a starting point to encourage dialogue…..to establish processes and transparency in decision-making, to articulate…….own values and visions clearly but not impose them. Leadership is about setting and not just reacting to agendas, identifying problems, and initiating change that makes for substantial improvement rather than managing change.”

Without mentioning names, there are a lot of Diploma holders in Parliament today, whom, if given a chance to run this country, will do better than what Mr. Mwanawasa did with his Law degree and much far better than what the ‘acclaimed’ current degree holder president has so far done.

What our country needs is a president with a majority rule. The one who will poll more than 50% votes, because such a president will be accountable to the majority people who sent him into power; hence his allegiance to serve them better at all costs.

Copyright© 2010 Mazuba Mwiinga February 1, 2010