By Staff Reporter
Political Analyst Dante Saunders is praying for a Constitution that will remove powers of the sitting President.
And Mr Saunders is osensibly distraught with Presidential Press Aide Amos Chanda for referring to opposition alliance leaders as rats.
Mr Saunders said in an exclusive interview at his residence that successive Presidents have continued to manipulate the Zambian people because of the enormous powers they enjoy.
” From 1964 up to this particular time, we are saying remove the powers of the President that is a bottom line. They want to manipulate the people of this country we are sick and tired of being manipulated. Time has come to put politicians on the spot. They are our servants and they will continue to be our servants until that time comes when we will say, you can’t serve us any more we want change,” the Political Analyst said.
He said since Independence the Zambian people have made it clear what they want in the new Constitution.
” From 1964, the people of Zambia have been very consistent with what they want, not what lawyers and politicians want. We want the Constitution the way we want it and that is it period! They can be no negotiations about it. All these lacunas they are talking about, I can’t see them at all. The only lacuna I can see is what Government wants to bring in to help them in certain articles to give them the powers to be able to manipulate the Zambian people, they must see for one minute that they are playing on our intelligence because they continue mocking our intelligence, we want it this way, they say they want it the other way.
Mr Saunders doubts whether the PF will give the people of Zambia the Constitution they deserve.
” So, for me, this Constitutional issue is totally a taboo at the moment. We have to wait for the next Government to come into place and when it comes into place and I have spoken to many parties…we are looking forward to give the Zambian people a good Constitution. My appeal to the people of Zambia is that let us remain peaceful and forget that this Government will ever give us a good Constitution. Don’t waste your time submitting anything to them because it is of no consequences at the end of the day. We want them to give us our rights in the new Constitution and remove the powers of the President, we are sick and tired of talking about the same thing,” he said.
The Political Analyst said it was easier to demand for a new Constitution from the Colonialist than it is now with the PF leaders.
“…That is what I fought for from the Colonialists and I must say the fight I had with the Colonialists in order to give us our Constitution was a walk in the park as compared to what we have to fight for now by the very people who stood with us to fight for the Constitution. If you talk about people like Rupiah Banda, these people were there with us in the liberation struggle, we fought for the Independence of this country. Look what they have done to us, up to now, we don’t have a Constitution. So really politician should know their role when they are elected, how they should be able to deal with issues,” he said.
Mr Saunders warned the politicians against mocking the intelligence of the people they govern.
” This issue of mocking our intelligence must come to an end. If you say this one is not a university graduate so he is useless, so why bother coming to ask for their votes, why bother. Let those who have been to university be voters if that is what they want but that is not the kind of Zambia that we want, we who are not educated, we the poor people, the suffering people,” he said.
And Mr Saunders went for Mr Chanda for calling alliance leaders rats who do not think properly.
“I want to warn Amos Chanda, you can’t go round calling people rats, you can’t do that. I am not a rat and I don’t know whether you know of any rat . Pointing a finger that all those people within the alliance are rats…these people are representatives of thousands and thousands of people, so by calling them rats, you are basically calling their followers rats. No one is a rat, neither is Amos Chanda a rat. To me, he must stop calling us rats. Just because we don’t agree with President Edgar Lungu on certain things doesn’t make me a rat. So, you don’t go out calling political leaders and other institutions rats, that is an insult to society. Does it mean he is calling the entire Zambians rats? So, don’t come to us when you want votes because you regard us as rats,” he said.