Chiluba Rupiah

Chiluba and Rupiah fooling themselves

by Mazuba Mwiinga

What a mind poking query the Post newspaper's March 2, 2010 editorial comment posed! Chiluba’s acquittal: who is fooling who?

Trying to get the right response to this question reminds me of Chiluba’s famous quote reported by the Press some where around 1983. Chiluba as a daring unionist then was reported as having said: “Politicians are so forgetful because when we remind them of the promises they made they say we are inciting the people”

Today Rupiah Banda is on record for having a heavy hand on Chiluba’s acquittal by Magistrate Chinyama and when we tell him that posterity will judge him to the last hair of his life for his misdeeds, he says we just have no respect for criticizing the elderly.

Indeed politicians are so forgetful. Rupiah Banda knows so well what kind of president Chiluba was. This was a man whose government initiated Rupiah’s Party president then, Dr. Kenneth Kaunda’s death attempt when the State Police shot at him in Kabwe in August 23, 1997. It’s the same Chiluba who locked up Kaunda on Christmas Day in December 25, 1997 in Chimbokaila State Prison only to have him in House arrest at the mercy of Dr. Julius Mwalimu Nyerere of Tanzania who begged Chiluba. It’s the same Chiluba who withdrew Kaunda’s pension for 10 years, only to be paid by the Mwanawasa administration. Yet today Banda says Chiluba was a damn good president. What a gag!

It’s so amusing really to note that even a lay person in the knowledge of law would wonder as to how a person who in court gives un sworn evidence could be believed on what he is saying. The question is, if you are telling the truth, why should you refuse to swear?

The Chiluba acquittal may seem a dead log at the moment, but Rupiah and Chiluba should bear in their mind that this case is a sleeping giant; a time bomb ticking by the day waiting for the right time to explode.

It’s said that as we spread the bed, we should be ready to lie on it. The more one will try to ignore their misdeeds, the further their fate coats their lives. Zambians know very well; in fact too well to forget how Rupiah is trying to aid Chiluba from being gripped by the fair hands of justice, thinking that because Zambians are well known as docile people then he has succeeded in fooling them; God forbids. Chiluba and Rupiah are the ones fooling themselves.

Who knew that Kaunda will one day leave State House after those 27 boring, irritating and amusing years? Who knew that Chiluba will end up an infamous former president stripped off his protective plumages of immunity for his 10 gluttonous, uncaring, painful, priding and selfish years? Zambia is a democratic nation and no matter how, one seemingly powerful person will try to twist his leadership to remain in power, a day will still come when time to vacate the seat calls.

It may take another decade or generation of leaders but posterity always takes time to correct what otherwise was ignored in the past. And that time whether we like it or not, will come. And today’s crocodile tears of joy we see in Chiluba will be tomorrow’s true tears of paying for his crimes.

Copyright: March 2, 2010

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