Too early to assess UPND – Ng’andu Peter Magande
By Derrick Sinjela
Former Finance Minister Ng’andu Peter Magande says it is not prudent and too early to assess the performance of the United Party for National Development (UPND) as such an evaluation can only be done after a year.
Responding as to his overall assessment of the economy and performance of the UPND leadership, Mr. Magande told the author to that doing so will become justifiable after a year in office.
President Hakainde Hichilema and Vice President Reverend Witner Kapembwa Mutale-Nalumango UPND leadership took authority from the former 6th Republican President Dr. Edgar Chagwa Lungu and former Vice President Ms. Inonge Mutukwa-Wina of the Patriotic Front (PF) on Tuesday 24th August, 2021, 216 days as at Press Time on Monday, 28th March, 2022.
“Well I am not going to assess the overall picture of the Zambian economy nor evaluate the performance of the UPND leadership as doing so can only be done after a year,” advised Magande.
Still on economic, Magande says without measurable targets, Zambia will not achieve her socio-economic development aspirations.
Mr. Magande holds a view that any development agenda at country, regional, continental and global level will only become achievable once young people are brought on board.
And in an apparent reference to increasing financial inclusion, the former Movement for Multiparty Democracy (MMD) Chilanga Member of Parliament (MP) links the imbalance to information gaps as most citizens do not know how to access nor effectively use existing Information Communication Technology (ICT) services and gadgets.
“Many people and communities have access to mobile phones, laptops and internet connectivity but lack knowledge to effectively utilize the ICT gadgets,” noted Magande.
Still on education, a trip a tripartite ICT innovation partnership involving the Indian Institute of Hardware Technology ,(IIHT), MAGA Digitech and Eden University will see students. access lessons online from a home comfort or ICT means without physical contact with lecturers and peers.
Speaking Shortly after appending signatures and opening a Computer Training Centre (lab) at EDEN Road University Great East Road (GER) Campus opposite the University of Zambia (UNZA) GER entrance of former Sylvia University of Zambia, Magande, who is Eden University Council Chairperson explained that a firm he is associated known as MAGA Digitech Limited has the franchise to roll out IIHT education and ICT products and services in Zambia.
And a soft spoken Eden University President Kelvin KAUNDA signed on behalf of the learning institution as IIHT Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Mr. N. Murali Mohan and team participated via zoom from Bangalore, India.
Flanked by Deputy Vice Chancellor Dr. Bubanji Flavien and Registrar Mrs. Barbara Hachamba, KAUNDA reiterated that provision of quality education remains key to Africa attaining sustainable development.
“Eden University is committed on the inclusion of ICT to drive the agenda of quality education provision on the continent,” vowed Kaunda.
On his part, Eden University Vice Chancellor Professor Mutuku Mutinga is impressed with interest among young people to acquire academic competence and certification.
Prof. Mutinga argued in an interview after witnessing the tripartite partnership that nations that invest in education prosper.
“It is true that countries investing in education benefit as prosperity is guaranteed,” said Prof. Mutinga.
Prof. Mutinga says the free education policy, pursued by the UPND leadership will result in more people or learners aspiring to become teachers.
Prof. Mutinga says in the recent past Zambia in general and Eden University in particular had recorded and noticeable reduction in citizens enrolling for teachers causes on account of an employment freeze.
“I am certain that numbers of people training as teachers we rise as children and young people now require to be taught,” said Magande.