The Patriotic Front have engaged in acts of shameless compulsive mendacity on a citizen whose only ambition is to exercise his right to pursue dreams which every citizen is entitled to, and that is to aspire for public office.
The viciousness, abuse and sheer malevolence with which they have carried out their mission raises more questions than answers and requires some investigation.
At the hands of the PF, and particularly in the past two years, Hakainde Hichilema has undergone unprecedented and unbelievable institutionalized labeling based on the stereotypes, that no other opposition leader perhaps since the pre-independence period, has been subjected to.
Anything aligned with Hakainde either by choice like his SDA faith or matters of God’s own sovereignty like his ethnicity, has not been spared from this institutionalized vitriolic attack by the PF. His businesses, family and close associates, his rural upbringing and even his tribe’s cultural heritage of cattle rearing have all been belittled and condemned by the PF Party and Governments officials.
When Hakainde Hichilema featured on the World renowned BBC TV interview hosted by Steven Sucker who plays the devil’s advocate, it is estimated that the Zambian audience both locally and in the diaspora far outstripped the Zambian viewing of Muhammad Ali’s ‘Rumble in the Jungle’ epic and legendary fight with George Foreman in Zaire in the 70s. It is further believed most of those of who were glued to the screen were PF Government leaders and cadres who immediately engaged in all manner of unsolicited analysis accompanied by verbal diatribe and abuse.
So many conspiracy theories have been advanced among many, that Hichilema belongs to a 17th century society of the Masons who in real essence were architects and builders who strived for excellency in their trade, to having been a one man army who single handedly privatized and sold the mines in the mid eighties, even though he was not a Government official. Not a single person has brought any evidence of these so called allegations, whose ploy may have attained a certain degree of harm to HH’s ability to fairly present himself as the man who can conduct the people’s business and confront the dire challenges that face the Zambian citizens.
At the core of the conspiracy theories is a slick attempt to deligitimise Hakainde as a viable and credible candidate for the Republican presidency.
On a fundamental level, these efforts are a tedious ‘run off the mill’ conspiracy theories mated out with ethnic supremacists invectives.
To suggest (as in certain quarters) that HH’s success story is as a result a tribal ‘token’ from an ‘unqualified’ minority low caste tribe are charges many Zambians especially those from so called ‘undeserving’ ethnicities find extremely offensive but deeply relate to. For this and many reasons, many such citizens and other ordinary ones, overwhelmingly support HH and are fiercely protective of him because in his fight to express his competency and ability to vie for the top national job, they also see their own personal struggles they have endured as a result of ethnic prejudices.
The assertion that ‘minority’ tribes don’t deserve the Presidency is absurd and delusional and are claims of fitful projections of ethnic paranoiac thinking which unfortunately hold power over tribalists. These feelings are a hallmark of ethnic resentment and overt bigotry that Hichilema’s political opponents use to fuel hate. Every Zambian regardless of ethnic, racial, sex or religious background has a right to aspire for public office including the Presidency.
These attacks on HH have not gone unnoticed internationally and instead of attaining their intentions of destroying him, they have ironically built him into a fighting machine whose process button has been set to destroy the injustices and prejudices the PF have created over the years which has set citizen against citizen and left a deeply divided Nation.
Many analysts believe the only person who can successfully reverse the deep chasms and damage the Patriotic Front has inflicted upon the Republic, is the man who himself has experienced first hand the evil machinations of the PF in their quest to prevent him from reaching the pinnacle of his dreams. Others will strive to perpetuate the status quo.
Hakainde Hichilema is such a man who will bring back lost unity and shared values with which this great Nation was founded upon. There is increasing evidence that many citizens across racial, ethnic, religious and any artificial barrier agree with this notion that HH can move the Nation forward.