President Lungu’s address on the Eve of Zambia’s 52 independence anniversary

GOOD EVENING COUNTRYMEN AND WOMEN,

TOMORROW, 24TH OCTOBER, 2016 MARKS THE 52ND ANNIVERSARY OF OUR HARD-WON INDEPENDENCE. THIS IS ANOTHER IMPORTANT MILESTONE IN OUR NATION-BUILDING JOURNEY.
THIS DAY IS IMPORTANT FOR EVERY ZAMBIAN. IT CALLS UPON EACH ONE OF US TO REFLECT ON OUR NATIONAL IDENTITY, ACHIEVEMENTS AND THE TASK AHEAD OF US.
OUR FOCUS, AS WE BUILD OUR FUTURE, SHOULD THEREFORE BE ON GALVANISING OURSELVES TO TURN OUR CHALLENGES INTO OPPORTUNITIES, AND UTILISE THESE TO IMPROVE THE LIVES OF OUR PEOPLE.
LET US TAKE COGNISANCE OF THE FACT THAT OUR INDEPENDENCE DAY ALSO FALLS ON THE UNITED NATIONS DAY. A DAY WHEN WE CELEBRATE OUR COMMON HUMANITY AND RE-DEDICATE OURSELVES TO THE GREATER CHALLENGE OF ACHIEVING A WORLD AT PEACE WITH ITSELF .

COUNTRYMEN AND WOMEN,
THE SPIRIT OF OUR FOUNDING FATHERS AND MOTHERS WAS NOT ONLY TO SEEK POLITICAL FREEDOM. THEY ALSO SOUGHT A BETTER LIFE FOR EVERY MAN, WOMAN AND CHILD OF OUR MOTHERLAND.
THEY ENVISAGED A COUNTRY OF EQUITY, AN INCLUSIVE AND FAIR SOCIETY WHERE POVERTY IS ABSENT. THEY FOUGHT AND SHED BLOOD SO THAT WE SHOULD BE INDEPENDENT AND BUILD FOR OURSELVES A GREAT COUNTRY, A PROSPEROUS COUNTRY, OFFERING THE CERTAINTY OF SOCIAL JUSTICE AND WELL-BEING FOR ALL.
TOMORROW, 24TH OCTOBER, IS THE DAY THAT WE CELEBRATE AND HONOUR THEIR HEROISM BECAUSE OF THEIR SACRIFICES AND LOVE FOR THIS COUNTRY.
WE ARE THE HEIRS TO THE HERITAGE OF THEIR PATRIOTISM.
WE SAY THANK YOU TO THAT GENERATION OF MEN, WOMEN AND YOUTH, BOTH LIVING AND DEPARTED.

TOMORROW, WE SHOULD, THEREFORE, COME TOGETHER IN OUR GREAT NUMBERS AND DIVERSITY, TO CELEBRATE OUR INDEPENDENCE DAY IN THEIR HONOUR. LET US EMULATE THEIR EXTRAORDINARY SPIRIT OF PATRIOTISM. THEY SHOWED US A GOOD EXAMPLE!
COUNTRYMEN AND WOMEN,
THIS YEAR, WE CELEBRATE OUR INDEPENDENCE UNDER THE THEME: “CONSOLIDATING OUR INDEPENDENCE AND NATIONAL UNITY FOR A SMART ZAMBIA.”
THIS THEME IS NOT ONLY APPROPRIATE, BUT ALSO A TIMELY REMINDER THAT WE ARE A COUNTRY ON THE MOVE TO PROSPERITY.
IN THIS JOURNEY, WE WILL FACE CHALLENGES FROM TIME TO TIME. THEREFORE, WE MUST WORK TOGETHER TO OVERCOME THESE CHALLENGES BY BUILDING A ZAMBIA OF CREATIVITY, INNOVATION AND CLEAN SURROUNDINGS.
COUNTRYMEN AND WOMEN,

WITH HARD WORK AND UNITY, WE HAVE ACHIEVED ALOT. THE DURABLE PEACE AND STABILITY, DEMOCRACY AND AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENT, ARE SOME OF THE GREAT ACHIEVEMENTS WE ALL MUST BE PROUD OF.

ZAMBIA HAS HAD A PROUD RECORD OF UNBROKEN PEACE AND STABILITY SINCE ITS INDEPENDENCE IN 1964. OUR COUNTRY CONTINUES TO BE A SHINING EXAMPLE OF DEMOCRACY ON THE CONTINENT AS SEEN IN THE SMOOTH HAND-OVER OF POWER FROM ONE ADMINISTRATION TO ANOTHER.

EVERY YEAR, OUR HARD WORKING FARMERS CONTINUE TO PRODUCE ENOUGH TO FEED THE NATION, SOMETIMES UNDER VERY DIFFICULT CLIMATIC CONDITIONS. WE ARE TRANSFORMING OUR COUNTRY INTO A BREAD BASKET FOR THE REGION.
OUR ECONOMY HAS CONTINUED TO PERFORM STRONGLY AND HAS BEEN AMONG THE FASTEST GROWING IN SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA OVER THE PAST DECADE.
WHILE ECONOMIC PERFORMANCE IS IMPORTANT AND MUST BE SUSTAINED, IT IS INCUMBENT UPON ALL OF US TO ENSURE THAT THE BENEFITS FROM OUR PROGRESS AND PROSPERITY SPREAD TO ALL SECTORS AND SEGMENTS OF OUR SOCIETY.
OUR TASK NOW IS TO ENSURE THAT OUR ECONOMIC ACHIEVEMENTS TRANSLATE INTO MEANINGFUL IMPROVEMENTS IN THE LIVES OF OUR PEOPLE FROM CHAMA TO CHAVUMA; KALOMO TO KASAMA; AND MANSA TO MONGU.

COUNTRYMEN AND WOMEN,
WE CAN ONLY ACHIEVE GREATER PROSPERITY IF WE WORK HARD, REMAIN UNITED AND EMBRACE A TRANSFORMATIONAL CULTURE ROOTED IN INNOVATION, ENTREPRENEURSHIP AND SMART TECHNOLOGIES.
WE ARE LIVING IN A FAST-CHANGING AND COMPETITIVE WORLD. INNOVATION IS A MAJOR FACTOR THAT WILL DIFFERENTIATE BETWEEN THOSE INDIVIDUALS AND NATIONS THAT WILL LEAD IN DEVELOPMENT AND THOSE THAT WILL LAG BEHIND. 
LET US BE INNOVATIVE IN ORDER FOR US TO BE COMPETITIVE AND ACHIEVE LASTING PROSPERITY.
COUNTRYMEN AND WOMEN,
I URGE ALL THE FAMILIES, COMPANIES AND ORGANISATIONS IN ZAMBIA, REGARDLESS OF THEIR SIZE AND STANDING, TO MAKE DELIBERATE EFFORTS TO CULTIVATE, NURTURE AND REWARD HARD WORK.
THE ACHIEVEMENT OF OUR VISION DEPENDS ON ALL OF US BEING PATRIOTIC TO OUR MOTHERLAND, COMPLEMENTED WITH CONCRETE CONTRIBUTIONS TO THE DEVELOPMENT OF ZAMBIA BY ALL OF US.
I, THEREFORE, CALL UPON EACH AND EVERYONE OF US, FELLOW CITIZENS, TO BE PROUD OF BEING ZAMBIAN AND EMBRACE INITIATIVES FOR BUILDING AND REBRANDING OUR COUNTRY. THESE INCLUDE THE “BUILD ZAMBIA, BUY ZAMBIAN” AND THE “KEEP ZAMBIA CLEAN” CAMPAIGNS.
COUNTRYMEN AND WOMEN,
LET US MAKE OUR COUNTRY, ZAMBIA, A GREAT NATION BY PREACHING AND PRACTISING PATRIOTISM, AND REMAINING TRUE TO OUR NATIONAL VALUES AND PRINCIPLES. THESE ARE MORALITY AND ETHICS; NATIONAL UNITY; SOCIAL JUSTICE, HUMAN DIGNITY AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT, AMONG OTHERS.
I NOTE WITH GREAT CONCERN THAT A NUMBER OF OUR NATIONALS ARE LACKING IN GREATER SENSE OF PATRIOTISM. SOME USE THEIR POSITIONS FOR PERSONAL ADVANCEMENT WHILE OTHERS WORK WITH FOREIGN NATIONALS TO ROB THE COUNTRY OF ITS WEALTH.
TOGETHER WE MUST, THEREFORE, ALWAYS UPHOLD THE SPIRIT OF NATIONHOOD AND PATRIOTISM. IN THIS WAY, WE WILL BE PROVIDING A PEACEFUL, SECURE AND STABLE POLITICAL, SOCIO-ECONOMIC AND CULTURAL ENVIRONMENT TO ACHIEVE PROSPERITY FOR ALL.

THE PEACE AND UNITY WE HAVE ENJOYED FOR THE LAST 52 YEARS UNDER OUR NATIONAL MOTTO OF ONE ZAMBIA, ONE NATION, IS AS A RESULT OF THE RESPECT AND APPLICATION OF OUR VALUES AS A PEOPLE.
COUNTRY MEN AND WOMEN,

AS WE EMBARK ON OUR JOURNEY TO TRANSFORM OUR COUNTRY INTO A PROSPEROUS NATION, WE MUST RISE ABOVE POLITICAL, TRIBAL, RACIAL AND GENDER INCLINATIONS.

WE MUST COLLECTIVELY RESOLVE TO ACHIEVE OUR ASPIRATIONS FOR THE ZAMBIA WE WANT AS ARTICULATED IN OUR NATIONAL VISION TO BECOME A PROSPEROUS MIDDLE-INCOME COUNTRY BY 2030.

COUNTRYMEN AND WOMEN,
OURS IS A NATION FOUNDED ON CHRISTIAN PRINCIPLES UNDERPINNED BY THE LOVE OF GOD, WHO IS LOVE. GOD LOVES US UNCONDITIONALLY.
WE MUST, THEREFORE, BE TOLERANT TOWARDS EACH OTHER, REGARDLESS OF OUR POLITICAL, IDEOLOGICAL, RELIGIOUS AND CULTURAL INCLINATIONS.

LET ME CONCLUDE BY RE-AFFIRMING THAT ZAMBIA TODAY STILL STANDS AS A SHINING EXAMPLE OF A PEACEFUL, UNITED AND STABLE NATION. THIS IS AN ENVIABLE POSITION BY ANY STANDARD, A POSITION WHICH SHOULD NEVER BE SACRIFICED FOR ANYTHING.

AS WE CELEBRATE OUR INDEPENDENCE ANNIVERSARY, I CALL UPON EVERY ZAMBIAN TO STAND TALL AND TRUE TO THE WORDS IN OUR NATIONAL ANTHEM, “STAND AND SING OF ZAMBIA, PROUD AND FREE”.

I WISH YOU ALL A HAPPY 52ND INDEPENDENCE ANNIVESARY!

MAY GOD RICHLY BLESS YOU ALL!

GOD BLESS OUR GREAT NATION!
23TH OCTOBER, 2016

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