Domically Clause: The Most Foolish Statutory Instrument in Zambia

Published on 19th November 2019

There are several motivations the drafters of the current constitution had in mind when they placed the Domicility Clause (DC) in our current highest law in the country. One of those motivations is pure foolishness. I wake up on the shores of Lake Ontario and admire the azure morning dews on the meadows and I sigh, “What a brilliant country, a brilliant world we live in.” I have never doubted that Canada, for example, is an epitome of what and how a country and people should live. It is a model in almost every dimension – human rights, industry, technology, prosperity, academia and the list is endless. I live here and work here and have contributed my energy, intellect and I also lecture in its prestigious institutions – day-after-day contributing to the expansive knowledge base that make Canada a world’s beacon.

And here comes a Zambian politician who says, “No, he can’t come and vie for presidency here because he has not been in Zambia for 10 or so years!” Thinking this is patriotism - what retrogressive thinking. But before you indict me with insults and insipid mindlessness, let me tell you what you want to say. “You see, you want to double-dip – you want to have the best of the two worlds – you want to have a decent life abroad and then come and take away our positions!” If this is not foolishness, then it is the lowest form of ignorance. Because it will not be loss but an addition for me to return and contribute, for all purposes and intentions.

You don’t know the history of independent Africa. Africa was liberated by people who lived abroad and these influenced greatly the locals. They learned all the wisdom and secrets and even the hidden agendas of their Western counterparts and from then resolved to liberate Africa.  They had to, first, understand the psychology of politics and the mindset that had enslaved or colonized them. They then knew how to “fight” for independence and self-determination. Africa would not have been liberated apart from those who got educated and who worked abroad. To develop Africa, the same trend must continue.

There are two advantages that those of us who have lived and worked in developed formations have over those of you who have spent all your life in Africa. First, we live and work with our American and European counterparts and we understand them better. When we run African governments, we will be least duped and “cheated” because we understand the concepts and ideals that set these countries apart from the rest. And second and last, we have tested the “engine” of the West and, therefore, we can relate to ideas like technology, monetary policies, democratic indices and human right indicators. If it comes to negotiating for viable economic policies and agendas, no-one who has not lived in these countries can outwit us.

The truth is, you can give a Zambian who has never lived in a developed country a job of a president and liberally permit him to rule for ten or more years, but the more years he rules, the worst the country will turn out. Give me the reigns and within two years I will develop the country. The reason is simple, I have lived in these developed formations for many years and I will, naturally, be more inclined to improving rather than degrading the brand.

Furthermore, our world is now a global village, and the implications are such that technology and knowledge are no longer a monopoly of one country. And the best people to transmit such knowledge and know-how will, naturally, be those who have lived and experienced Westernism firsthand. I submit that the fears those selfish and poorly-informed politicians had of imputing the DC into our constitution had are not founded.

We are not here in the developed terrains for ourselves. We love our native countries and we would like to be back and contribute at the highest level. Change the constitution and remove the DC from the highest national instrument. It is not only bullish; it is an impotent clause and can hinder the very progress that the nation desires and admires. Take way the DC and let those Zambians who have lived abroad come back and inject their experiences, knowledge, expertise, know-how and transferred-skills into development for all.

There are several motivations the drafters of the current constitution had in mind when they placed the Domicility Clause (DC) in our current highest law in the country. One of those motivations is pure foolishness. I wake up on the shores of Lake Ontario and admire the azure morning dews on the meadows and I sigh, “What a brilliant country, a brilliant world we live in.” I have never doubted that Canada, for example, is an epitome of what and how a country and people should live. It is a model in almost every dimension – human rights, industry, technology, prosperity, academia and the list is endless. I live here and work here and have contributed my energy, intellect and I also lecture in its prestigious institutions – day-after-day contributing to the expansive knowledge base that make Canada a world’s beacon.

And here comes a Zambian politician who says, “No, he can’t come and vie for presidency here because he has not been in Zambia for 10 or so years!” Thinking this is patriotism - what retrogressive thinking. But before you indict me with insults and insipid mindlessness, let me tell you what you want to say. “You see, you want to double-dip – you want to have the best of the two worlds – you want to have a decent life abroad and then come and take away our positions!” If this is not foolishness, then it is the lowest form of ignorance. Because it will not be loss but an addition for me to return and contribute, for all purposes and intentions.

You don’t know the history of independent Africa. Africa was liberated by people who lived abroad and these influenced greatly the locals. They learned all the wisdom and secrets and even the hidden agendas of their Western counterparts and from then resolved to liberate Africa.  They had to, first, understand the psychology of politics and the mindset that had enslaved or colonized them. They then knew how to “fight” for independence and self-determination. Africa would not have been liberated apart from those who got educated and who worked abroad. To develop Africa, the same trend must continue.

There are two advantages that those of us who have lived and worked in developed formations have over those of you who have spent all your life in Africa. First, we live and work with our American and European counterparts and we understand them better. When we run African governments, we will be least duped and “cheated” because we understand the concepts and ideals that set these countries apart from the rest. And second and last, we have tested the “engine” of the West and, therefore, we can relate to ideas like technology, monetary policies, democratic indices and human right indicators. If it comes to negotiating for viable economic policies and agendas, no-one who has not lived in these countries can outwit us.

The truth is, you can give a Zambian who has never lived in a developed country a job of a president and liberally permit him to rule for ten or more years, but the more years he rules, the worst the country will turn out. Give me the reigns and within two years I will develop the country. The reason is simple, I have lived in these developed formations for many years and I will, naturally, be more inclined to improving rather than degrading the brand.

Furthermore, our world is now a global village, and the implications are such that technology and knowledge are no longer a monopoly of one country. And the best people to transmit such knowledge and know-how will, naturally, be those who have lived and experienced Westernism firsthand. I submit that the fears those selfish and poorly-informed politicians had of imputing the DC into our constitution had are not founded.

We are not here in the developed terrains for ourselves. We love our native countries and we would like to be back and contribute at the highest level. Change the constitution and remove the DC from the highest national instrument. It is not only bullish; it is an impotent clause and can hinder the very progress that the nation desires and admires. Take way the DC and let those Zambians who have lived abroad come back and inject their experiences, knowledge, expertise, know-how and transferred-skills into development for all.

By Charles Mwewa           

charlesmwewa@gmail.com


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