LET the people freely decide their destiny next year, says chief Hamusonde.
Meanwhile, Vice-President Inonge Wina says the allegations being levelled against Electoral Commission of Zambia are mainly to prepare Zambian’ minds that if some political parties lose the elections in 2021 they will say, ‘no, we told you’ when in fact it is a fallacy.
She told Parliament yesterday that the government was saddened “when we see democratic institutions being weakened for political expediency.”
In an interview, Hamusonde of Bweengwa west in Monze district said Zambians have the capacity to decide and draw their future politically.
“From the liberation struggle Zambians have united over who should be their leader. We saw Harry Mwaanga Nkumbula and others join ranks with Kenneth Kaunda and we fundraised to send KK to Britain [to ensure our independence],” he said. “So my appeal to the PF, President Edgar Lungu, the police and the ECZ (Electoral Commission of Zambia) is that let the people freely decide their destiny next year. Don’t tamper with their votes because we don’t want what happened in Malawi to happen here.”
And Hamusonde said it was sad that during by-elections the Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit and the Zambia National Service are sent out to distribute mealie meal and grade roads respectively.
He said state funds are also being abused to please youths and women when retirees have never been paid.
“We have a lot of old men and women who are waiting for their dues but what do we see? Millions of kwachas are being distributed by the PF during by-elections and also around the country under the guise of youth and women empowerment,” Hamusonde noted. “The DMMU is now a PF organ instead of servicing Zambians during disasters. I don’t know what type of disasters the DMMU was or is trying to mitigate during by-elections.”
He urged Zambians not to be taken for a ride in next year’s elections and ensure that they protected their votes.
“Let’s protect our votes next year,” said Hamusonde
Meanwhile, during the Vice-President’s Question Time in the House yesterday, Chitambo PF member of parliament Remember Mutale raised the issue of rigging allegations.
“Her Honour the Vice-President, the opposition in our country, Zambia, they have come up together and they are championing the allegation that the PF government has already rigged the 2021 elections. I would like to find out from you what government’s position is on this allegation which might divide this nation if not properly handled?” asked Mutale.
But Vice-President Wina said such was a fallacy.
“Mr Speaker, the allegations being levelled against ECZ are mainly to prepare Zambian’ minds that if some political parties lose the elections in 2021 they will say, ‘no, we told you’ when in fact it’s a fallacy. Mr Speaker, these are sentiments meant to undermine the credibility of the Electoral Commission of Zambia to conduct free and fair elections. And as government we feel saddened when we see democratic institutions being weakened for political expediency,” said Vice-President Wina. “Mr Speaker, institutions such as the ECZ are the visible pillars of our constitutional democracy and if they crack, then the idealism of constitutionalism cannot hold. Therefore, Mr Speaker, the answer is not to destroy what we have built but strengthen, to perfect our institutions such as the ECZ so that they become stronger – more stronger than before. Institutions are guardians of our liberty and we should nurture them, strengthen them, so that our democracy can thrive.”