Some analysts and political commentators have let their imaginations run away with them by saying that President Edgar Lungu is next on the roster. Very self-comforting prognosis if one is a die-hard anti-Lungu critique. Perhaps the ultimate summation of wishful thinking.
Otherwise any Lungu critique should just get used to the idea that the only way they are going to have him out is through the ballot. Twice he has put himself to a test through the ballot and has beaten his opponents twice.
Even the exit of long serving Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe through the aid of the army did excite some opposition elements in Zambia that the same could be replicated in Zambia. But any rational observer would laugh at such levels of reckless thinking that only seems to massage people’s egos.
For a start Mugabe had ruled Zimbabwe for 37 years through which period Zambia has seen seven heads of state. Zambians have never failed to remove a President whenever they have wanted to. Did they not wind up Dr Kenneth Kaunda after 27 years? Did they not democratically stop Frederick Chiluba from going for a third term? Did they not remove Rupiah Banda in 2011? So rather than draw imagined parallels we better draw lessons from our own rich examples of Zambian democracy through electioneering.
Zuma’s problems have been a carryover from the hour he ascended to power. It may not very comforting for President Lungu’s opponents that he is still around until and 2021 with the decision beyond that still mired in litigious controversy.
Should he decide to the legal process okay his candidature beyond 2021 then his opponents may have to live with the possibility of seeing for an even longer period but that is would be a decision only the Zambians can make. So rather than get excited about adversities beyond our borders perhaps we would do better to just sell our own candidates to the Zambian public and not rely on the misfortune of others.
After all even President Lungu’s fall on Women’s Day in 2015 had sent his opponents celebrating pronouncing that he would not live beyond his first term of office. But President has looked even fitter afterwards.