10 November 2012

Africa: Former Zambian President Counsels African Leaders

FORMER Zambian President, Mr Rupia Banda has asked African Leaders to always accept defeat after elections for the betterment of their people.

In line with the call, Mr Banda said the African Leaders should be humble and role models towards building a strong and social democracy.

Mr Banda was delivering a public lecture on good governance and democracy at the University of Dar es Salam as part of his two-day visit to the university.

His trip is part of Boston University African President Centre where he is (Mr Banda) the current President in Residence.

"Leaders should try as much as possible to respect people's demands, stop lying to them and give opportunities to everyone to be part and feel appreciated in our societies," he counselled African leaders.

He added that African leaders should emulate good governance and democracy from countries such the United States and Japan. "These are some of the countries with a long history of democratic practices, African leaders should learn from them," he said. Sharing his experiences as the president of Zambia from 2008 to 2011, Mr Banda said he cared for his people and he always did what was needed by Zambians.

"I was a kind of a role model in African leadership and this is recognized by people in and outside Africa. I did good things for Zambians," he said adding that he even accepted defeat and stepped down as a sign of respect to Zambians after presidential elections in 2011.

"The good things I did for Zambians is what made me what I am today. There are people who say that I was advised to step down after the results. That's not true, I made on my own," he told the gathering composed of staff, graduates and students of UDSM. Mr Banda had earlier asked the students to work together with other African students to transform the continent.

"I call upon you to come together, build confidence within yourselves, learn what is good for Africans and take it forward," he appealed. He also told them to value African cultures and use them to build a better Africa through good governance and democracy. Mr Banda came to Tanzania from Ghana where he delivered a similar lecture to staff and students at Ghana University.

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