From the Editor

Written By: The Lowdown - Dec• 31•00

cover2000-12The unsightly billboards which we wrote about in Blot On The Landscape, our lead article in November issue of Lusaka Lowdown, have been removed and the roundabout is once again aesthetically pleasing.  We have been congratulated by many who feel that they were taken down as a result of this article, but much as we would like to take the credit this, I am afraid we cannot.  The first copies of the Lowdown were delivered to retail outlets at about midday on the 30th of October, and when I drove past just before seven in the morning of 31st October, men were already working on dismantling them.   There is no way that the Lusaka City Council could have responded that quickly!  I believe that many of Lusaka’s residents had complained about them, which just goes to prove that changes can be made if enough people care to shout about what is wrong.  George Bernard Shaw once said “The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable man persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.”   Let us make it our New Year’s Resolution that during 2001 we are all going to be unreasonable and through this, put right some of the things that are wrong in Zambia.

The question of course is still ‘why were these boards erected in the first place?  Who gave the authorisation for them to be erected?  Did any money pass under the table for this authorisation?’  I don’t expect to receive any answers to these questions, but I also understand that the Lusaka City Council had to employ a third party to remove these billboards.  So, ratepayers money had to be used for this, at the expense of garbage collection or one of the other expenses for which we pay.  As residents of Lusaka, it is our responsibility to demand accountability and transparency.

In closing, we wish to extend our very best wishes for a Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year to all our readers, advertisers and colleagues.  Please drive carefully over the Festive Season and we’ll see you in 2001.

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