Cry Our Bereaved Constitution

by Mazuba Mwiinga

TIME tells of a people who when suffocated with despotism, that has all its resources to defend itself violently, patriotic citizens mostly take the logical route of non violence in driving their points home; and such a measure always shaks those in power with drenches of fear like a palm tree in a tornado. The rumbling words from one famous classic novel by Alan Paton, Cry the Beloved Country say it well:

“This is no time to talk of hedges and fields, or the beauties of any country. . . . Cry for the broken tribe, for the law and the custom that is gone. Aye, and cry aloud for the man who is dead, for the woman and children bereaved. Cry, the beloved country, these things are not yet at an end”.

And for sure our Zambia is never a beloved nation, but a country in bereavement. What we see happening to those demanding for the release of our Republican Constitution today is a mark-post for everyone to know the course of President Micheal Sata’s future actions on those who fight brave battles like Fr. Bwalya, McDonald Chipenzi, Hakainde Hichilema and others. We cry loudly today for our bereaved mother Zambia, because what was permissible then when multi-party politics re-entered our arena, is now a resounding choking noise of death chambers; just to silence the right cause and allow illegalities to continue.

What we voted for then; more money in our pockets, Republican Constitution in 90 days; so we were told is now illegal and our courageous brothers like Fr. Bwalya, who publicly supported the seating government today are sent behind bars.

But one thing, one Republican President Micheal Chilufya Sata ignores to know is that; steel bars do not make a person a prisoner, nor high concentrated Prison Walls make one a jail bird, for freedom comes from the heart and not from out of confinement. If the heart is free of what a person is fighting for; no rehabilitation is taking place and no retribution is being achieved even when you throw him in jaws of incarceration.

That’s why people like the late Nelson Mandela spent 27 years in Prison, but their hearts never failed their ideals and what they fought for was at last achieved without any remorse of being in Prison.

Micheal Chilufya Sata must learn and learn very quickly that it is not permissible to add to one's possessions if these things can only be done at the cost of other men for such development has only one true name, and that is misuse, abuse and mistreatment and is punishable by the law.

Although nothing has come yet, something is here already. It has started with a simple Prayer at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross; just as Fr. Bwalya started it with simple RED CARD; a paper without a mouth that instilled so much fear in those who begged for authority, just like how the PF is kneeling for power. By dragging Fr. Bwalya, Chipenzi, Richard Sakala and others to the court they think one thing is about to be finished, but they don’t know that here is something that is only begun. It happened in the Rupiah Banda regime, and when we told them this very truth, they said we were inciting people; just as the PF is saying now; yet we were just asking them to check their step. And today they are in the opposition.

We know that the darkest hour comes before dawn and when dawn finally comes, of our liberation, from the fear of repression and the burden of fear, who knows who gets out and who gets inside State House - that is our sacred secret.

Fr. Bwalya and others need a pat on the back because they have shown us how cowardly ‘giants’ can be; just a tingling voice made out of a combination of words has made them spend sleepless nights in bed because they know  how powerful the power of the people is. The silent noise of prayer asking for God's intervantion in PF's stance over the Constitution tells volumes of how this fight is not just for the Church and Civil Society, but for every patriotic Zambian who cares and cries for their bereaved country.

Something deep is touched here; something that is good and deep is coming for our tormented nation.

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