RAINBOW Party leader Wynter Kabimba says Bill 10 is not dead but has only been deferred to a later date for debate.
And Kabimba says supporting Bill 10 is not a treasonable act because even those doing so have the interest of Zambians at heart.
Meanwhile, Kabimba says Zambia is undemocratic because leaders do not have the heart to accept divergent views.
Speaking when he featured on Radio Phoenix’s Let the People Talk, Friday, Kabimba said Bill 10 was still alive.
“Is Bill 10 dead? Not as far as I know. The last we heard about Bill 10 from the honorable Minister of Justice is that the bill has been deferred and the Speaker cautioned the Minister of Justice that can you make sure that the debate comes back to the floor of the House quickly before this bill lapses because we are running out of time. So Bill 10 is not dead,” Kabimba said.
And Kabimba said if it was proven that the majority Zambians did not support Bill 10, he would “shut up”..
“Now let me tell you this, if we conducted a poll today and it is proven that the majority of Zambians say they don’t like Bill 10, I will shut up. If those that are saying they are against Bill 10 could prove in a scientific manner, using a poll for example, even a sample that they are in majority, I would shut up. The problem that I have, like he said, why are you shoving it down Zambians’ throats, no, he should say why are you shoving it down my throat because he has no evidence that he is representing the majority of the Zambian people. What I have disagreed to is people saying I have been bought, that’s what I disagree with. I object to that kind of characterization. I have seen on social media, they even put an amount, ‘you received K3 million’, I don’t know who was there when I was receiving that money. That’s how they try to alarm people. I remember somebody saying on social media after I featured on ZNBC, saying just tell us how much you have been paid, nonsense! If you don’t have an argument, keep quiet. Stop characterizing me and characterizing others,” he said.
In response to a question on whether there are two Bills, Kabimba said the recent Gazette notice was simply amendments to the Bill.
“There is only one Bill 10 which was gazetted in June last year and then now what you have are amendments to that Bill 10. So amendments in themselves are not a bill, so there are two things, the Bill 10 and amendments to Bill 10,” he said.
And Kabimba said supporting Bill 10 was not betrayal.
“And in debating Bill 10, there is no need for us to debate as if we were at war, we are not at war, yes maybe we are at war of ideas but we are not taking out guns. We can’t debate this with this inherent spirit of hate between those that are for or against. We are all Zambians and we have a right to hold different views. I disagree with the notion that the people that are speaking against the bill are the ones speaking on behalf Zambians, that’s not right, all of us are speaking on behalf of the Zambian people. All of us in one way or the other represent the Zambian people. I disagree with those that are against Bill 10 when they say that those of us that are supporting Bill 10 are betraying the Zambian people. There is no treasonable act here, we are not committing any treason. We just happen to hold a different view,” he said.
“We also realize and are conscious of the fact that this Bill 10 has divided our society, it has divided families; it has divided friends. I have got some of my friends who are on the other side, they oppose Bill 10 and I am on the other side but we are still friends. I have got some of my family members that are anti Bill 10 and I am pro Bill 10 but they are still my brothers and sisters. So that is how it should be in a democracy, we can’t all think the same and that’s why we fought the one party state.”
Meanwhile, Kabimba said Zambia was far from being democratic.
“My appeal is that if you really are a democrat and you believe in democracy, your views shall not always prevail. Other people’s views shall prevail over yours, that’s the only way we can build democracy. Democracy is for strong men and women, it’s not for the faint hearted. How many times do we face adversity in life, how many times do we face defeat in life and we have to accept it? How many times have we lost loved ones and we still recover from that pain and move on? So if you are going to act like a spoilt child in a democracy, you shall always remain disappointed. A spilt child who wants to cry for chocolate in the middle of the bush where there is no shop, democracy means the views of others, however unreasonable they may sound to you shall prevail and you just have to accommodate that pain, that’s what democracy it all about. We are not democrats, even those that purport to be leaders in this country are far away from being leaders because we are undemocratic,” said Kabimba.
“There is nothing about the nation, each of us wants to score against the other. So we’ve become embroiled in these technical arguments, legal actions, interpretation of the law, interpretation of the bill which is not yet law, alarming of those who can’t read and write, creating an environment that Zambia is on fire when there is nothing like that.”