Directive by Minister of Home affairs meant to stifle opposition political parties during up coming by-elections

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HOME Affairs Minister Edgar Lungu
HOME Affairs Minister Edgar Lungu

FODEP requests Minister of Home Affairs to reverse his directive on Police Notification

The directives by the Minister of Home Affairs to political parties and other stakeholders intending to participate in the Mpongwe and Livingstone Central by-elections to notify the police for their in-and
outdoor meetings is unfortunate, regrettable and meant to only stifle the opposition political parties, candidates and supporters’campaign activities ahead of the by-elections.

Foundation for Democratic Process (FODEP) would like to appeal to the Minister to reverse the directive and allow political activities to conduct their business within the provisions of the electoral code of
conduct of 2011. Political parties’ activities in any election are well-known by all players including the police as spelt out in the Code and since the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) has set the
date of the by-elections, the police should plan on how to provide security to all players as opposed to directing them to obtain police permit.

FODEP clearly notes with great concern that the directive is selective as it will only apply to opposition political parties, cadres and candidates under the current provisions of the Public Order Act
Section 5 subsection 6 which exempts the President, the vice-president or any minister or junior minister or the speaker or deputy speaker of the National Assembly from notifying the police for any public meeting convened or at the request of and intended to be addressed by the above officials.

The Minister also is overshadowing the constitutional powers and mandates of the Electoral Commission of Zambia in terms of enforcing of all electoral laws in the country and ensuring that political parties whether in the opposition or government strictly adhere to them and freely canvass support from voters.

Given the political party system in Zambia where most government functionaries, ministers and deputies are also ruling party officials, the directive is only advantaging the ruling party whose officials are exempted by the Act from notifying the police of any meeting.

Further, the directive is also ultra vires the constitution which emphasizes protection and significance of the respect of the rights to assembly, freedom of expression and association of citizens.

FODEP observes that the directives does not even take cognizant of the provisions of regulations 5; 12 (c); 21 (e) of the Electoral Code of Conduct of 2011. Instead, we proposed that the Minister should ensure that police officers do not use their offices to oppress any political party, candidate or supporter’s right to expression, participation,and freedom to canvass support from voters ahead of the by-elections especially with the recent controversial application of the Act by the Zambia Police.

The Minister also is overshadowing the constitutional powers and mandates of the Electoral Commission of Zambia in terms of enforcing of all electoral laws in the country and ensuring that political parties whether in the opposition or government strictly adhere to them and freely canvass support from voters.

If this directive prevails, it has the potential to threaten the credibility of the electoral process in the country. This will be a threat to the holding of free, fair and credible by-elections. FODEP’s suggestion is that the Minister should ensure that an effective enforcement mechanism of the Electoral Code of Conduct rather than the Public Order Act by the Police is designed and put in place while allowing political stakeholders conduct their campaigns freely.

McDonald Chipenzi
Executive Director

30 COMMENTS

    • vote

      Stupid fellor. How can this be called “Fair Enough”. Since when did PF get a permit as an opposition whenever there was a bye election?

    • vote

      I think what ‘Mo taim’ means is that Chipenzi’s appeal to the Minister is a fair call. But probably he can clarify he/she can clarify.

  1. vote

    Kingdoms rise and kingdoms fall. Very soon, PF will taste its own medicine! It is foolish to thing all those who were before were not smart.

    • vote

      You are very right mwana. Soon or later, it could be in 5, 10 or even 20 yrs, PF will be no more and the likes of Edgar will be roaming the streets like mad dogs. The problem I see with some Zambian politicians is that they fail to learn from the past. We had UNIP, MMD and today we have PF, tomorrow we might have UPND. This is reality.

    • vote

      I agree totally. I would add that soon the people will liberate themselves by ignoring such unreasonable directives. This type of governance cannot last in this day and age.

    • vote

      It is shameful to see that PF has turned againts its ideals although some of us knew that nothing good wud come out of Sata and PF, even PF cadres know this very well except they cant accept it becos of embarrassment.

  2. vote

    This govt will suffer serious troubles when they leave power.Politicians seem to suffer the same sickness.They never learn from history!Ndelolesha fye.By the way another job given to Kabimba.Awe sure!

  3. vote

    what a hectic party. Just a reminder ba PF there is time for everything, everything has its own beggining , rise as well as downfall(decline). When you were in opposition you were very against with the so-called public order act. Bane mukachula ngamwafuma mupawa.

    • vote

      They are gone but it is only that Libyans and Iraqs were not as docile as Zambians. May be docility is an under statement, Zambians are cowards!

    • vote

      Luckily Gadaffi started when he was just 28yrs but aba bambi balikota kale so no worries. Nature will soon take course and they all know it that is the reason why they keep on fighting for succession. We pray that nature does it soon.

  4. vote

    Zambians were warned about dictator Sata- vindication – more vicious actions to follow in Zambian politics.

  5. vote

    My ears cannot beleive that the PF who pretended to fight for rights and freedoms and called Banda a dictator are now behaving worse. Sure this is Africa

  6. vote

    Mr Edgar lungu this is hw u hv started behaving hw many tyms did we meet at petcayos without permission? Do u remember the day u won nd we came to yo house nd we all walked frm Jack compound to omelo mumba? Today ur our master, God bless u gays

  7. vote

    I was fooled when Post newspaper always made huge commentaries about freedom and our rights. I did not know that they were just fighting for Sata to come in and there after abandon the fight. They are now very quiet even the freedom of press is no longer their fight. Zambia the real africa

  8. vote

    pf is the worst and misuse of their power.we should make sure we hammer them when they are out of power.Mulongoti and shikapwasha were like this where are they now

  9. vote

    Am happy this is happening in Zambia today because i warned Zambian that never trust Serpent Cobra Ukwa Sata CNP. Mukalimbe this is just a tip of an iceberg. Ba PF you can even start killing us for being fools to have voted for you.

  10. vote

    This is unfortunate. Zambia Ubutala wacipiba. Zambia Twasebana. This is archaic governance.
    And the people of Zambia Dwiiiii………..
    This country is full of docility.
    It’s most confounding.

  11. vote

    Mwefipuba mwe. You just want to perpetuate anarchy you unreasonable opposition. You need to be dealt with with the firmness you deserve. Time for nonsense is gone now you have to feel the weight of this government. Your leaders will be in court on a daily basis.

    • vote

      The Right to express yourself is not the right to be taken seriously. And @ Umunthu ni Sata u shud no that.
      Or maybe Zambia is not just full of docility, we hav a lot of imbeciles. The freedom of Association, Movement and the freedom of expression was wrestled from the colonial powers at a great cost than an ******** can ever fathom .
      And believe you me we can’t let any one takes us back there. Not Sata, Not this Drunken Master Lungu or anyone of any kind.
      PF govt is a disappointment in upholding the tenants of good governance.

  12. vote

    ee didnt read it all..but will the ruling party have to satisfy the same requirements..and wats the point in notifying police for gatherings…so that ba ba tane ama permit!eee oneday we will be telling our children how ‘we were people’ and how we lived in an era when there was a thing called democracy!..mhmm clearly mwanawasa was the best president zambia ever had..even the likes of FTJ,RB ..i wudve added kaunda but hes buddies with sata …

  13. vote

    Great news! Show those who were dancing in the streets when PF came to power what you meant by Donchi kubeba! The lack of critical thinking among Zambian voters is amazing. We believe anything that comes out of politicians mouths. Poverty is curse. For ten pin or a plate of nshima and a can of coke people will vote for anybody even people with no leadership qualities. Really sad

  14. vote

    I think there is no problem here. As opposition just get as many permits as possible for the whole period in advance, so that you are not incovinienced.

    Peace and Prosperity to Mother Zambia.

  15. vote

    EXAGERATIONS MWEFIPUMBU MWE .IT WONT HELP U DEMONS. YO STRATEGE IS A NONE STARTER STUPID ZAMBIANS. U WANT A BANANA GOVERNMENT SO THAT U PERPETUAT ILLEGALITIES. UBUSHUSHI GO TO HELL!

  16. vote

    The oppostion should boycott these elections.Its about time we start sending a strong message to the snake least it forgets that we still own the country not him and his group of minions eg Mu`membe and Winter.
    The violence we witnessed at woodlands police station is an indication that if things are left an checked,we could end up picking weapons to defend outselves since the law enforcers have put on PF uniforms. Mr.SATA must not forget what happened to the Ivorian president. Your people can turn out to be your worst nightmare.Take RB`s exmaple,even if he was perfect but alteast he has retained the respect even after leaving state house,becaue he did not temper with our rights.What of you Mr. SATA. What kind of repsect are you going to get considering the way you are running the…

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