Yesterday Harry Kalaba just announced his resignation from his position as Foreign Affairs Minister. Days after Lucky Mulusa was fired for questionable reasons. Wow! I am at a loss for words because of the courage and the sacrifice he has displayed. I remember once reading about about how the late Levy Mwanawasa and a few other ministers once did the same thing as a way of standing up to the corruption that was going on in MMD. The question ‘Are there any politicians cut from that kind of cloth extinct?’ always plagued my mind since. I was pleased that Harry Kalaba was able to stand up and relinquish all that came with his previous position because he cares and more importantly he wont turn a blind eye only to keep benefiting himself.
I will be honest, I had my misgivings about Harry Kalaba. However after this, I have prima facie new found respect and admiration for Mr Harry Kalaba. Though he is yet to specifically name and give evidence of the corruption he is alleging,Harry Kalaba is an example other people uncomfortable with the corruption they see around them can look up to.I am eager to see what he does next for the Zambian people and what happens for him in the next election.
Below is the post he put up on his Facebook page regarding his resignation.
‘I HAVE RESIGNED
There comes a time in a person’s life when it becomes necessary to die to self for the good of others and if not for that reason, at least to stand for one’s cherished ideals and values. I have just dropped my resignation letter as Foreign Affairs Minister with President Edgar Lungu – a position I have cherished and held for over 4 years. I have taken my decision to resign as Foreign Affairs Minister with a heavy heart but quite succinctly with a clear and resolved mind. I have no shed of doubt that this was a necessary undertaking and an unavoidable one looking at the path our country has taken – a path of insatiable greed and shame which is clearly unacceptable and unsuitable.
My fundamental belief is that my allegiance should not be with a position, Party or Person but it must be with the country and its people. My conscious and everything I am have directed me to choose the country over my individual comfort. To some, this may appear like an act of defiance, yet to those close to me, to those who have watched me wreath in perpetual pain and mourn over my country, this may more or less be a relief because I have finally found peace in my mind and heart even in the face of losing the comfort that the position of Minister brings to give both expression and action to what I believe in. In any case, I accepted this appointment in the first place as a gesture and avenue to serve my Country but when that becomes difficult due to incongruence of values and objectives, there could only be one outcome. This outcome is what I am repeatedly convicted of by my own conscious especially at night when I go to bed to face my own brokenness.
We cannot proceed to manage national affairs with cold indifference when the levels of corruption are swelling and being perpetrated by those who are expected to be the solution. Our youths are wallowing in poverty without a clear plan for them while business preferences and opportunities are always tilted in favour of outsiders, reducing Zambians to mere spectators in the economic affairs of the State. This cannot be allowed to continue. We need to go back to the original agenda of our Party the PF, where the poor and not the corporates must be at the centre of all our decisions. It would appear that the poor Zambians have ceased to be the reason we are holding power. Materialism and the propensity for money has taken over and is arrogantly at the centre of many decisions being made today.
What I wish most for the youths of Zambia is opportunity and success. All I desire is for each and every Zambian to make their own success story – the story they deserve, one that allows them to raise their heads high in a country where effort, work, planning and selflessness will become the hallmark of our people.
I have elected to join the many sidelined Zambians by remaining as an ordinary Member of Parliament representing the gallant people of Bahati. Some will call it politics and yet some will call it sacrifice. Whichever way you choose to look at my action, one thing is certain, I can no longer be a silent listener to the whispers of greed and indifference making rounds in the corridors of power. Contrary to what a number of my colleagues claim, I believe that the failure of the Zambian political and economic management does not lie in the individualistic nature of a lot of our politicians, but it is the result of oppressing this individualism to a level where there is consistent effort to suppress individualistic dynamism in preference for collective carelessness and indifference.
When people begin to feel overwhelmed by fear for speaking the truth, it is time to realize that critical fundamentals have shifted. We all have a role to play in making things right. This is my little contribution – Zambia is our Country, we need and must reclaim it Back.’
The resignation post above is potent with patriotism and conviction, many portions of it are quote worthy. Many among us are appalled with the the way the country is being run with many scandals over the past months that imply corrupt conduct. these are things that have been spoken about in hush tones or not even spoken about at all particularly by those in civic and governance related positions. What Harry Kalaba has done is not an easy thing. James A. Garfield said, ‘A brave man is a man who dares to look the Devil in the face and tell him he is a Devil. ‘