The Jesuit scholars further say, “Citizens, particularly, the jobless youths and women are eager to see the new team come up with deliberate efforts to create jobs and business opportunities for these youths and women who made up the majority of the voters who turned out on 12th August.”
Mr. Hichilema was sworn in as President on August 24 after emerging the winner of the country’s Presidential poll.
In their August 29 statement, the Jesuit scholars note that “Mr. Hichilema has stated that his team has come to work; work and more work. There is evidence that HH is a hard worker.”
“One wonders though if the individuals in HH’s team will match up to his work ethos. As for work, there is plenty of it cut out for HH and his administration to bring about the much desired constitutional, governance and economic reforms in a consultative and inclusive manner,” they say.
They further highlight the need for Zambia’s new leadership to “foster unity under our motto of ‘One Zambia One Nation’. This is predicated on embracing a path of healing of the wounds of any wrongs or harms committed during the just ended elections.”
“People must learn to move on and march together towards a hope-filled future that taps into the all-embracing leadership qualities of women and the very creative and innovative energies of youths,” the Jesuit scholars say in the August 29 statement signed by the JCTR Executive Director, Fr. Alex Muyebe.
They further express the need for the new government to “rid this nation of political and electoral violence once and for all. This entails completely abolishing cadreism in any shape or form in this country by finding creative and sustainable ways of economically empowering those who are accustomed to making a living from this way of life. “
The HH-led government will have to “strengthen democracy anchored on the rule of law, respect of human rights and people’s liberties as a catalyst for economic recovery and national development,” the Jesuit scholars say.
“This must include a people-driven constitutional refinement with a referendum to consider adopting some progressive provisions to enhance the Bill of Rights. This must also include legal reforms to address retrogressive provisions in the Public Order Act, introduction of the access to information law to enhance transparency and accountability, and reforms of other contentious pieces of legislation in our laws,” they add.
In endeavoring to steer Zambia in the right direction, JCTR Officials say, “HH has professed to have adopted a servant-leadership model to guide his work.”