Don’t take religion too seriously
I would like to warn against taking religion too seriously in these elections. I know we are, constitutionally, declared a Christian nation – whatever this really means – but religion seems to be playing a growing and very unhealthy role in politics. Presidential candidates presumably believe that they will attract voters by claiming (correctly or not) to be deeply religious. And they have shown a great deal of ingenuity in trying to prove it, ranging from regular church visits to waving crosses and rosaries around to using biblical quotes on campaign posters. However, voters had better remember that actions speak louder than words. Our second president, Frederick Chiluba, put the Christian nation declaration in our Constitution, but remains the most corrupt president in Zambia’s history. Our fifth president, Michael Sata, declared that he would rule Zambia according to the Ten Commandments, but ran the economy into the ground. Our sixth president, Edgar Lungu, created a new public holiday – National Prayer Day – but is yet to prove himself one way or another. Religion does not necessarily make for a better leader!
Camilla Hebo Buus, Editor Zambia Weekly