It looks like everywhere to turn to the message is – let there be peace.
We have entered 2019 with a heightened hope that the Church-led national dialogue process set for January 18 can bring harmony to our homeland.
Resolving troublesome points, especially the contents of the public order Act, electoral reforms, and judicial reforms may stem out the chaos threatening our country’s democracy. There’s need in our country to learn from the African proverb that says: You destroy your enemies when you make peace with them.
In his New Year message, UN Secretary-General António Guterres said: “These are anxious times for many, and our world is undergoing a stress test. Climate change is running faster than we are. Geopolitical divisions are deepening, making conflicts more difficult to resolve. And record numbers of people are moving in search of safety and protection. Inequality is growing. And people are questioning a world in which a handful of people hold the same wealth as half of humanity. Intolerance is on the rise. Trust is on the decline.”
But Guterres noted that there are also reasons for hope.
“The talks on Yemen have created a chance for peace. The agreement signed in Riyadh in September between Ethiopia and Eritrea has eased long-running tensions and brought improved prospects to an entire region,” said Guterres. “And the agreement between the parties to the conflict in South Sudan has revitalised chances for peace, bringing more progress in the past four months than in the previous four years…. In 2019, the United Nations will continue to bring people together to build bridges and create space for solutions. We will keep up the pressure. And we will never give up. As we begin this New Year, let’s resolve to confront threats, defend human dignity and build a better future – together.”
Guterres gives us a sad picture but at the same time hope in the New Year. Hope is the last thing one can lose. Zambians have remained hopeful for a better tomorrow. They are hopeful for solidarity. They are hopeful for a peaceful co-existence. And peace is not necessarily the absence of war; it consists in the many things that cause friction between people, communities, societies; in disagreements.
Ezugo Obuekwe opines that peace is very important in our lives and is essential to our overall wellbeing.
However, peace has eluded humanity for many years. It has been hindered by war, conflicts and disagreements throughout human history, which has left our world and the many people in it in a deplorable emotional and physical state. This should not be the case.
Indeed, there is need for our nation to look at ourselves and seek peace today. We should try as much as possible to raise the future generations that will replace us one day to value peace above all else so that this world will be a better place for all of us. Our homeland should not just be better for the haves. It must be a better place for the have nots too. It should endeavour to uplift the have nots.
Let 2019 be a year of peace, a year Zambians of all political divide understood that this country is their only home.
May it be a year in which citizens of this country will stand tall, above partisan lines, and proclaim political violence an enemy to national development; a year in which professionalism in all sectors of the nation will prevail.
A better Zambia can and will only come about from the honest and hard work of its citizens working in brotherhood, sisterhood – seeing each other as an indispensable cog in the big machine that drives our socio-economic agenda.
Before all our individual interests, is the collective good – national unity and development. A better Zambia for each and every Zambian is possible and is within reach. Let’s together embrace the future with hope.
Happy News Years.