A reflection on Zambia’s 50 years of Independence

Sara Drawwater
1 August 2014
As we prepare to celebrate Zambia’s 50th year of Independence, I would like to share my personal thoughts on the subject.

As we prepare to celebrate Zambia’s 50th year of Independence, I would like to share my personal thoughts on the subject.

Is Zambia really developing as it should?Zambia is one of the developing countries in the southern region of Africa, making its way to being developed and with a real potential to develop to a high standard. But Zambia’s Independence Day is not so important to me because I feel that most countries that achieved independence after Zambia are doing much better than Zambia. When Zambia was getting independence, people celebrated ignoring the fact that Zambia lacked capability in handling national and economic issues. This incompetence has meant that Zambia has developed slower than it should, allowing countries like South Africa to overtake it. What is the point of achieving and celebrating independence if people cannot enjoy the benefits of development?

Access to information is fundamentalI try to imagine life without internet, face book or any social media. Imagine life without the capacity to search online or download movies or even have a local library to go to. Where would we turn to learn about new things and to gather information? Amazingly this is reality for millions of people in Zambia today. Even for those who potentially have access to these things, everything appears to be very expensive and unavailable.

I look forward to a time when fast internet will be available to everyone. But for now I guess we have to work with what is available — slow internet connections and the inability to access information.

Education is keyWhat is the point of independence when people lack the basic needs of life? If people were to be exposed to education, lives would improve drastically. This would bring a change in perception allowing people an opportunity to look at life at a different angle. Corruption and bad decision making has also contributed to the cost of living leading to more poverty. What is the point of independence when more people are dropping out of school because of funds? Everyone is hoping for divine intervention to create a shift in the economy.

I look forward to a time when independence will become a reality; a time when the Zambian Government will see to it that people have free education allowing everyone an opportunity to develop regardless of their different backgrounds. They say every journey begins with a single step. Maybe these should be Zambia`s first steps — who knows.