A 21-YEAR-OLD hair dresser of Kawambwa in Luapula Province has joined the race for parliament ahead of the August 12 elections.
Despite her tender age, Lindiwe Mawere knows something profound; that leadership is not about being awash with money but being near and necessary to one’s people.
Lindiwe was born on February 22, 2000 and completed her Grade 12 at Kawambwa’s Ng’ona Secondary School in 2019.
She is not a big fish of some kind, from an economic standpoint. After all, she is just a simple Kawambwa-based hairdresser who started this niche when she was 16 years old.
Hairstyling, particularly in a hinterland like Kawambwa in Luapula Province, cannot earn one so much. Lindiwe does it to simply have a little amount of money to live on.
Regardless of her occupation, Lindiwe has been touted by the Socialist Party to be the Kawambwa Central parliamentary candidate, ahead of polls this August.
She was unveiled at Kingfisher Garden Court in Lusaka by her party’s general secretary Dr Cosmas Musumali, along with parliamentary candidates for certain constituencies around Zambia.
“I’m Lindiwe Mawere and I’m 21 years old. I’m currently working as a hairdresser in a salon in Kawambwa,” Lindiwe says.
“I finished secondary school in 2019. I have not been able to go to college or university because I cannot afford the fees. My parents are not able to pay for me; my parents don’t work and what they get from agriculture is not enough.”
She shares that she is not able to save enough money for college or university, from her job as a hairdresser.
Lindiwe says if things remain unchanged, hairdressing will be her present and future.
She adds that the Socialist Party and its president, Dr Fred M’membe, have taught her that things cannot remain the way they are.
“We can change things and nobody will change anything for us. It has to be us ourselves! I have to play a role, or else I’ll have no future and no present,” Lindiwe notes.
“Our president has taught us that the future is not built in the future, it is built on the threshold of what we do today. I’ve been selected by my people in Kawambwa to represent them in Parliament this year.”
At 21, Lindiwe is set to be the youngest person in the history of Zambia to stand as a parliamentary candidate.
She is aware of consistent but false public commentary that young people are the leaders of tomorrow.
Lindiwe argues that she is not only a leader of tomorrow, I’m also a leader of today.
“We young people have a duty to make the real changes required by our country,” she says.
“The socialist party and our president offer this opportunity; has offered me this opportunity.”
Lindiwe is not afraid to assert that she has nothing, albeit she will be contesting as a member of parliament.
“I don’t even have a bicycle, I don’t have money. But I’m standing as a parliamentary candidate. Leadership is not money; leadership is being near and necessary to one’s people,” Lindiwe explains.
“I urge all my fellow young people in this country to support me in this struggle, to support our president and our party and ensure that we win the August 12th elections, this is our only hope for a better future and for a better life.”
She is confident of winning the Kawambwa Central seat, based on her popularity in that expanse.
“I’m equal to the task! Chances of victory for me are there. I have hope that I’ll win the elections,” Lindiwe says.
Meanwhile, Lindiwe does not hide her passion to study nursing.
But for now, her eyes are set to the venerable Manda Hill, as a lawmaker.
From today, March 15, 2021, 149 days remain before August 12, the polling day.
Kalemba March 15, 2021