UPND’s looming 2026 battle against voters


UPND’s looming 2026 battle against voters

By Daimone Siulapwa

Happy Sunday, today I will throw seven key points to the UPND leadership, its members, sympathisers, die hards and praise singers as food for thought, to digest truthfully without a preconceived mind.

In our political landscape, the 2026 elections are shaping up to be a fierce contest, not merely between political parties but a daunting face-off between the UPND and an increasingly disillusioned electorate.

The battleground is set, and the stakes are higher than ever as the issues of fixing the Kwacha and alleviating the soaring cost of living take center stage.

1 The Cost of Living: An Unbearable Burden

The phrase “bread and butter” in politics has never rung truer than in the current Zambian context. The escalating cost of living has become a crushing burden on citizens, and the government’s inability to address this issue is a ticking time bomb.

Hungry voters do not vote on promises; they vote with their bellies. The UPND must acknowledge this harsh reality and take swift, effective action to alleviate the economic hardships faced by the people.

Will the voters still be hungry and disgruntled when they go to vote in 2026?

2 Meali Meal, Fuel, and Electricity: Managing the Essentials

In the realm of governance, few things matter more to the common man than access to basic necessities. No GDP figures, interest rate, good investor atmosphere or graphs will convince a hungry person in Chibolya or Chawama about how well the economy is performing than cheaper meali meal, fuel and electricity.

The mismanagement of essential commodities like meali meal, fuel, and electricity has historically been the downfall of many governments world-wide.

The UPND needs to reassess its approach to managing these crucial aspects of our daily life. The government’s role should be one of ensuring accessibility, affordability, and reliability at all costs, not a source of frustration for the electorate.

3 Openness to Criticism is a Virtue, Not a Weakness

Thanks to the new government spokesperson, Cornelius Mweetwa, he has brought a breath of fresh air. A healthy democracy thrives on constructive criticism.

The UPND must shed its defensive posture and embrace dissenting voices. Labelling opposing views as mere disgruntlement is a perilous path. True governance requires a discerning ear, a willingness to self-reflect, and openness to diverse perspectives.

The UPND’s intolerance to criticism risks alienating segments of the population and jeopardizing the very democratic principles it seeks to uphold. In politics, it is always an advantage to hear what the people have to say regardless of how painful it may be, than to shut them dawn.

4 The Thin Line Between Protest Vote and Discontent

The UPND rose to power on the wave of a protest vote against the PF. However, the same force that propels a party to victory can swiftly turn against it if governance falls short of expectations.

The party must remember that maintaining the public’s trust requires constant effort, transparency, and a commitment to addressing the core concerns of the electorate.

It would be dangerous, naïve and amateurish for the UPND to still think they have the 2.8 million who voted for them still in their back pocket. They will need to work very hard to even get half of that number in 2026, let alone the 2.8 million. UPND must be very clear that everything now depends on how they delivery from now until the next elections.

5 The Kwacha Conundrum: A Currency in Crisis

A fundamental challenge that the UPND must confront is the alarming depreciation of the Kwacha, a crisis fuelled by the country’s dangerously low foreign exchange reserves.

The heavy reliance on imports only exacerbates this predicament, putting immense pressure on our currency. To salvage the situation, the government must make building up foreign exchange reserves a top priority.

This is not merely an economic concern; it is a matter of national stability. The destruction of many SMEs who are the backbone of our economy and depend on imports is on the brink if measures are not put in place urgently to curb the volatile kwacha. With minimum wages going up in January 2024, retrenchments will be the order of the day within the next two months.

A strategic move towards promoting local production is paramount in stabilizing the Kwacha. By developing the agricultural, manufacturing, and mining sectors, Zambia can reduce its dependence on imported goods. This not only stimulates economic growth but also curtails the demand for foreign currency, thus alleviating the strain on the Kwacha.

The government should be proactive in providing incentives and robust support to local businesses, fostering investment and growth in key sectors.

6 Breaking the Chains of Copper Dependency

Zambia’s over-reliance on copper exports is a dangerous vulnerability. The global volatility of commodity prices poses a constant threat to the nation’s economic stability.

Diversifying the economy is not a luxury but an urgent necessity. By exploring and expanding into other sectors, Zambia can shield itself from the unpredictable fluctuations in the copper market.

The UPND must champion this cause to ensure a resilient and diversified economy that can weather the storms of international markets.

7 A Call for Strategic Reflection for UPND

As the UPND prepares for the 2026 elections, it stands at a critical juncture. The path ahead is fraught with challenges, but it also presents an opportunity for transformative leadership.

Fixing the Kwacha, tackling the cost of living crisis, and addressing fundamental governance issues require not just policies but a resolute commitment to the well-being of the Zambian people.

The UPND can ill-afford complacency or a dismissive attitude toward the genuine concerns of our citizens. A proactive, inclusive, and responsive approach will not only secure electoral victory but, more importantly, pave the way for a Zambia that is economically robust, socially just, and politically stable.

The clock is ticking, and the 2026 elections will be a litmus test of the UPND’s vision, resilience, and dedication to the democratic aspirations of the Zambian people.



    • Of course you and your province will vote for one of your own.

      Thankfully, only you and cousins will vote for UPND. The other 8 provinces have seen enough, and they will fire him. Will will go back to default settings, as it should be, as it was.

  1. Keep on dreaming no one can vote for PF Lucifer’s/idiots,I think we are no longer interested with cadrism, tribalism, police brutality, land grabbing, nepotism, favouritism , gassing and corruption.

  2. Let us leave tribal remarks out of statements please. It is not only in Zambia that we are feeling the high cost of living. Let us not even go too far Malawi Zimbabwe all these are feeling it too. If we the people are blaming the UPND government then we are not thinking straight. Who had caused this hardship.

  3. Actually 2021 elections were tougher than the 2026 ones although we haven’t yet come to them. In 2021, UPND was fighting to grab the power from notorious PF as some people would say. You can agree with me that one of the toughest tasks for any opposition party is to fight the ruling party and manage to defeat it, with a big margin for that matter. There is no incumbent president who can just let it go so easily, he puts up a good fight to retain it. Unfortunately PF or ECL failed with all the resources at their disposal, they even bought some helicopters for some people to de-campaign UPND and HH but things couldn’t just workout for them. So come 2026, PF will be fighting to get the power it lost back while UPND will be defending the hard won power. I don’t think they can give it away so easily. Besides that, we still have about three more years to go and a lot more good and bad will still happen in these remaining three years. I would urge you not be excited or over confident because if UPND plays it’s cards well, most of these big challenges we have can disappear like heavy clouds and we shall remain smiling with bright sunny skies above our heads. Moreover UPND has already done a lot of campaign through its numerous CDF projects country wide which no past President or party has ever done. When campaigns come, others will be promising voters whilst UPND will be pointing at its works or achievements. People want development and not experiments every fives years, no.
    The cost of is high and no one can dispute it but people should know that high cost of living alone does not make the president a bad leader. According to their standards, the children of Israel could at times threaten to go back to Egypt meaning that the cost of living was better in Egypt than in the wilderness but that’s not what God was looking at. To God you are better off starving as a free man or woman than feasting as a bond man or woman. We know that at the end of rough and tiresome journey of forty years, the goodly land of promise flowing with milk and honey is there waiting for us. The Joshuas and Caleb’s are there and with our faith in God, they will lead us there. Don’t listen to men of little faith because they just prove God and nothing else.
    I am therefore still very optimistic that in 2026, HH and UPND will carry the day. People are well informed and they don’t depend on the dirty information or propaganda from the haters but on the information which they have out of what they see their government doing for them. I like the advert for Emirates Airlines where the young woman says; 1500 movies! I don’t want this life to end, fly Emirates, fly better. Even me, 30.6 million per Constituency, I don’t want this life to end, 2026 vote HH, vote UPND.

  4. The author is as pathetic and brainless as the very idiots who brought all the problems this country is facing when they stole, looted, plundered, gassed us and shamefully lost the elections. STUPID IDIOTS.

  5. 2026 will determine the calibre of Zambians, it’s time that we ll judge our level of intelligence. In 1964 we choose kaunda for the seek of removing a white rule, in 1991 we were tired of one party state on that day even if a boerbull was chained against kaunda it could have won, first mistake, Labour moment put to rule and it ruled against it self, the Labour moment died and its still dead. In 2011 s low calibre hooligan realise that the number are among the hungry street dwellers which has no brains, for them to vote it was food and beer, the era that saw first dullest president MCS. May he not resurrecte, which gave birth to a train criminal, that stole from a widow and due to the calibre of us Zambian with all our doctors, professors, engineers, lawyers and accountants we gave the presidency to a person that told all of us that he had no idea and vision but obvious still armed with his thieving knowledge, in short we gave a hyena to look after our sheep, the product is the current low levelled people wanting to rule us with the support of lazy bagger indiyo we are doomed. Citizens the 2026 election is not for a South West or North East but for the nation called Zambia.

  6. True, the cost of living is bitting. HH And his team must do a serious self introspection. For 2026 however, I will vote for UPND. I Would rather die of UPND HUNGER than from PF PANGAS.

  7. Before this writer could write all that he wrote, he should have done research in what the UPND has resolved to do, or what they are doing in order to solve the problems you have itemized. It is like the UPND have gone to sleep. Not at all. COST OF LIVING. The cost of living is brought about by the high cost of petroleum products. The UPND government would have started bringing in cheap petrol from Angola like yesterday. As soon as the road being worked on from Kalumbila district to the boarder with Angola is completed, cheap petrol will come to Zambia next year as the Hakainde administration and the Angolan government have completed everything let alone the road network. MEALIE MEAL. The UPND government have done what it takes to ensure there will be an abundance of the crop of maize to feed not only the Zàmbians but citizens in countries around us. Cheap fertilizer is going into the crop for this planting season instead of the expensive imported fertilizer. Readers can translate this massive feat to the cost of the maize. ENERGY PRODUCTION. The New Dawn government have worked hard to put on range some units of generation that the PF government failed to put into generation of electricity, making this country almost self sufficient in our requirements and also we are about to be a leading exporter of electricity in the region. Loadshedding is history friends. CONCLUSION. The UPND as a credible government do appreciate the concerns of us citizens. I will honestly say that 75% of the promises have been accomplished to the amazement of us citizens. What on earth will make us fail to fix these 3 issues? We are game in 2024 and critics will eat their words.The three issues are- the price of mealie meal, cost of commodities and high cost of petrol can not be an issue of failure on the part of UPND and government. To solve these problems, it does not require subsidizing consumption and things happen as the opposition think. It requires working at it and work is in progress. The doubting Thomas will be disappointed come sometime next year. IPS UPND Luanshya Dist.


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