Tribal tag dy­ing

Daily Nation Newspaper - - READERS FORUM -

IT’S baf­fling that even at this mod­ern time, some 'ed­u­cated' prom­i­nent peo­ple can­not see the folly of hav­ing 'tribe' in­di­cated on our Na­tional Reg­is­tra­tion Card (NRC). Fifty four years of in­de­pen­dence should make us have only one 'tribe' proudly called 'Zam­bian'.

Dur­ing colo­nial rule, the pol­icy of di­vide and rule was fiercely ap­plied. The colo­nial­ists planned to de­lay our in­de­pen­dence by keep­ing on re­mind­ing us that we were not one na­tion but 73 dif­fer­ent tribes. That's why 'tribe' was de­lib­er­ately put on all of­fi­cial doc­u­ments. Dur­ing the strug­gle for in­de­pen­dence, our free­dom fighters were fight­ing as a na­tion, not as tribes. Now, what peo­ple with tribal men­tal­ity should know is that the fu­ture for 'tribe' is very bleak. Ur­ban­iza­tion has sen­tenced 'tribe' to death with no op­tion of ap­peal. As town, mu­nic­i­pal and city coun­cils mul­ti­ply in Zam­bia, 'tribe' will have no place. In fact, in town, you are iden­ti­fied by your oc­cu­pa­tion, not tribe. Look at how Zam­bians are freely set­tling in any party of the coun­try. These days you rarely see re­tirees go­ing back to the land of ori­gin. Now, home is where re­tire­ment has found you. Look at the fre­quency of in­ter­mar­riages. Which 'tribe' can be given to in­ter­mar­riage prod­ucts like: Musonda Phiri, Ki­fita Mweemba, Mu­tale Sililo?

Fight­ing to re­tain 'tribe' on the NRC is tak­ing the coun­try back­wards. Show me a coun­try which is still pro­mot­ing tribal iden­tity and l will show you hun­dreds of states in Amer­ica, Europe and Africa where tribal iden­tity has been buried. Na­tional iden­tity is the way to go.

The PF gov­ern­ment is tak­ing de­vel­op­ment to all parts of the coun­try with­out look­ing at 'tribe'; with­out look­ing at 2016 vot­ing pat­tern. That's the lead­er­ship Zam­bia needs!

So, next time some­one asks you which tribe you are, tell them " Zam­bian." Let's all pro­mote 'one Zam­bia, one na­tion' by sup­port­ing the re­moval of 'tribe' on our green NRC. It serves no pur­pose apart from pro­mot­ing 'trib­al­ism'. FRAN­CIS


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