Friday, June 03, 2011

British envoy calls for issue-based campaigns

British envoy calls for issue-based campaigns
By Masuzyo Chakwe
Fri 03 June 2011, 07:50 CAT

ZAMBIA needs issue-based campaigns, says the British envoy to Zambia.
In an interview, High Commissioner Carolyn Davidson said lack of issues in the election campaigns was something that was being talked about in the run up to elections this year.

“An issue-based campaign is what Zambia needs. There are issues, we have mentioned the issues before, about the economic growth not reaching the people and there are a lot of issues and I think if you go out into the constituencies that is what the people are talking about,” she said.

She urged leaders to be translating the messages that they were getting from their constituents into messages about the issues which people really cared about.

High Commissioner Davidson said issue based campaigns were necessary in a functioning and developing democracy like Zambia.

She said it was also good that there was a lot of debate in Zambia which needs to be encouraged because that was what elections were all about.
She said elections were about having lots of talk and different opinions being expressed.

High Commissioner Davidson said it was important that all media organisations behaved responsibly and that all the people talking to the press also behaved responsibly in terms of messages about peaceful and very transparent free and fair elections.

She said the United Kingdom's position was very clear in that a free press was an important part of any functioning democracy and that needed to be encouraged.

And High Commissioner Davidson said it was important that economic growth trickled down to the people who needed it the most and that the government was in the best position to do that.

High Commissioner Davidson said Zambia was a democracy and the way democracies worked was that people demanded from the government what they wanted.
She said the Zambian people needed to be making demands on the government to address the poverty issues and work out how best to achieve that.

High Commissioner Davidson said her government was already doing that through different programmes but that was just a small part of it while the rest was down to Zambians holding their government accountable, asking and pressing it to tackle some of the issues that were important to them.

High Commissioner Davidson also said her government was working very closely with Zambia and the regional economic community to address some of the problems affecting trade.

She cited the Africa free trade initiative which her government was very committed to delivering. High Commissioner Davidson said what they wanted was for trade to flourish on the African continent among African neighbours.

“It doesn't make sense for Zambia to be exporting more agriculture produce to the EU than to the Congo and we are working with Zambia to address to obstacles which are blocking regional trade,” said High Commissioner Davidson.

Labels: ,


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home