Friday, March 1, 2024

UPND Writes to Vice President Seeking Justice over Youth Day Cadre attacks

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HH with Canisius Banda at KKIA this morning enroute to Eastern Province
HH with Canisius Banda at KKIA this morning enroute to Eastern Province

The opposition UPND is concerned that no action has been taken by government 15 days after its female party member was stripped naked by PF cadres on Youth Day. In a letter dated 18th March 2016, addressed to Republican Vice President Inonge Wina, UPND vice president for administration Canisius Banda said that such violations are the main reason its youths and general membership have often chosen not to fully participate in state and national events.

Dr. Banda said that was because their safety not not guaranteed and the promise of police protection did not appear to apply to them.

Below is the full letter

UPND National Headquarters
P. O. Box 38032
Lusaka, Zambia
No. 83A Provident Street

18th March 2016
Madam Inonge Wina
The Vice President of the Republic of Zambia
Office of The Vice President
Lusaka

Dear Madam Vice President,

RE: COMPLAINT ON VIOLENCE BY PF CADRES ON YOUTH DAY, 12th MARCH 2016

We are writing to raise our concerns with your esteemed office regarding the violence perpetrated by PF party cadres during the course of the Youth Day celebrations on Saturday 12th March 2016; an event that was not only officiated by the Minister of Youth and Sport, Hon. Vincent Mwale, but also by yourself in the capacity of Republican Vice President.

The unnecessary attack by the PF cadres left not only the UPND Youths but also many other young people, among them school children, injured, abused and traumatised from the hurling of bricks, stones and other harmful objects and substances such as teargas from the police.

Most of all we are utterly disgusted and angered by the incident in which a 27 year old lady was stripped naked and abused for simply wearing UPND party regalia to the Youth Day event, an episode that happened in full view of the police and no more than one kilometre from where you were seated in safety. This came just days after International Women’s Day and is a sad reminder of how far we fall short of protecting, supporting and empowering our girls and women as things currently stand.

Madam Vice President, tolerance of divergent views and peaceful co-existence are core values of democracy. When these values are sacrificed by cadres, for example through acts of politically motivated violence, our very existence as a democracy and an oasis of peace is directly threatened. We are surprised that while womanhood and humanity in general was being stripped and put to shame, the police turned a blind eye. While Government has condemned violence in words, no action has followed despite the fact these crimes took place in broad daylight and in full view of officers of the law.

Such violations are the main reason our youths and general membership have often chosen not to fully participate in state and national events because their safety is not guaranteed and the promise of police protection does not appear to apply to them.

Your Government is on record as having stated that it would like to see women’s participation in active politics grow to 40%, but clearly such incidents do not give one confidence that Government has any real agenda to either protect women’s rights or create an enabling environment for women to participate in politics.

Madam Vice President, this letter is our humble appeal to your conscience and motherly heart. Of great concern is the notable silence on your part both as a mother and a woman who is also the second most powerful person in our country. While you have addressed the youths and implored them not to be used as tools of violence, your words risk being labelled mere political rhetoric unless action follows, and we firmly believe the only reason PF cadres continue to harm our people is because of Government’s failure to act on the matter meaning perpetrators expect to go unpunished.

We, in the UPND, are committed to peaceful dialogue and we implore you to inculcate the same spirit as government and the ruling party.

We seek your assurance that justice will prevail over the violent attacks on Youth Day and that women in general can expect action from you to address gender based violence, including the issue of the young lady who was stripped naked on Youth Day.

We look forward to your urgent action and response to the above concerns.

Yours sincerely

Dr. Canisius Banda

Cc:
The Minister, Youth and Sport
The IG – Zambia Police
The Diplomatic Community and Multilateral Organisations
Women for Change
NGOCC
Women in Law of Southern Africa
Law Association of Zambia
Young Women Christian Association
Human Rights Commission

UPND President
UPND Vice President [Admin]

19 COMMENTS

  1. Dr. Banda, how about the PF woman who was stripped naked in Mazabuka by UPND cadres? Did the PF Vice President complain, in writing, to you as UPND Vice President with copies sent to the the following: The Minister, Youth and Sports, The IG – Zambia Police, The Diplomatic Community and Multilateral Organisations, Women for Change, NGOCC, Women in Law of Southern Africa, Law Association of Zambia, Young Women Christian Association, Human Rights Commission. You can’t see that you are practicing double standards?

    • Divide and Rule,

      You didn’t know about this incident, in all likelihood, because of your poor reading culture. Where do you think I got this information if not from our print and electronic media? This was reported in all the major newspapers.

    • @ Maikalange of course at some point you must have skipped browsing and reading for some cadres were arrested over the same issue in Mazabuka.

  2. Some time in the late ’90s or early ’00 Inonge as NGOCC chairperson wore a mini skirt in protest (for which she got locked up in cells) against a woman who was stripped in Lusaka. Fast forward 2016 a similar incident happens under her nose & she goes stone cold when she is in a better place as Veep to address such scourge. What a waste of human species.

    • silly cadres always playing the blame game at the expense of people who do not want to do anything with their parades..we are only interested in issue based debates not folly!!

  3. Bo Inonge is indeed a disgrace to the womenfolk.One would have expected her to atleast give a neutral statement on the incident lest she ruffles some dirty PF feathers.Her silence just goes to confirm the old adage that “birds of the same feather flock together”.She is not any different from the rest of the PF thugs.

  4. …in my opinion…the incidence/case of stripping that lady is more grave than the suspected roughing up of Frank Bwalya….why don’t UPND renowned lawyers ask the lady in question to sue either the IG for gross negligence and incompetence or sue Davis Chama head of PF for compensation on the embarrassment and torment she suffered at the hands of those well known rogues…..

    • LAZ quickly came in support of those girls who were painted but could not do the same on the stripped lady just because it was a political scenario…how hypocritical….

    • ….bwana jay jay….its not for LAZ to sue any one but facilitate and give necessary support to the victims…its the victim to do the suing….in case of the lady who was stripped….she can sue the IG or Davis Chama in the absence of the actual hands on offenders…….GOT IT NOW..??

  5. This respectful letter will be misconstrued as insulting to PF’s intellect. Right now they are busy looking for some offensive word(s) in this letter that they can use to hit back. That’s how their mind works, they can’t process constructive criticism. It’s almost like they don’t know what it is they are supposed to be doing in govt.

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