Back in 1936, a mother received news she was with child. In July of 1937, her bundle of joy arrived, a baby boy and they named him Michael. As the boy grew, one wonders if at all those around him knew the role for which he was destined. When they teased him in school, did they ever dream he would one day rule Zambia? When he failed or misbehaved, did they ever envision him becoming a disciplinarian who would one day endeavour to rid his country of corruption? I wonder if some had endearing names for him like, “Mikey” or something along those lines? Yet the boy grew, the boy fought and came from being just Michael to President Michael Chilufya Sata. Michael means “Who is like God?” or “Gift from God”. Remember the archangel Michael from the Bible? Michael is one of the seven archangels in Hebrew tradition and the only one identified as an archangel in the Bible. In the Book of Revelation in the New Testament he is portrayed as the leader of heaven’s armies, and thus is considered the patron saint of soldiers. While Michael Sata may not have engaged in spiritual battles in the heavenlies, he will be remembered as a leader who engaged in battles for a better Zambia. Akin to the Archangel Michael’s epic battles, Michael Sata faced his own in his journey to becoming president of Zambia. Failing to win elections three times then securing presidency on the fourth attempt, Michael Sata endured a great deal of opposition and trials but continued on his quest to become the first in command in a country so rich in natural resources.
Whether many agree with his policies or not, one thing we can all learn from Michael Sata is determination. Nothing good ever comes easy, neither do good things come without a price and above all, good things do not come to those without faith in their vision and that which they stand for. As many condolences and eulogies pour in for Michael Sata, I cannot help but wonder, what would people say at my own passing away? What would people remember me for? If I die today, would the world feel my absence? Would the world be worse off without me or would no one notice?