As the day of elections draws closer, stakeholders across the country have continued to urge politicians to remain calm and ensure that the country holds peaceful elections which will be acceptable to all parties.
On Sunday Anglican Church Eastern Diocese Bishop William Chombo called for the end to the unprecedented high levels of political violence that the country has continued witness saying politics are not an end in themselves but a vehicle by which people chose who should be their leaders.
Bishop Chombo explained that people should not reach an extent of killing each in the name of politics because elections should be a means for delivering development to the people.
He said the country can go into flames due to careless language by political players hence the need for them to restrain themselves from using inflammatory language against each other.
“This country can go into flames due to careless language. What we know is that politics is just a vehicle to identify who are our leaders should be. Politics in themselves are not an end but just a means to deliver development.
“What we have seen in this year’s election, I think in Zambia we are seeing the kind of political violence that we have never witnessed before. People should not be hacking each other over nothing, what people want is to choose a leader who will move the country forward. That person can come from PF, UPND, FDD or MMD. The ultimate goal should be how do we develop Zambia,” he said.
He said politicians should not turn the country into a war zone because of greed and selfishness saying “we want to continue living in peace and continue to be a beacon of peace in the region. We don’t want to be like Burundi or Rwanda were people can’t iron out their problems without first fighting, we are known for being a peaceful nation and that should continue.”
The Bishop also sensitized the congregants on the need to vote in the referendum.
He said members of the church who do not understand the importance of the referendum should ask members of their families or neighbours who might have the knowledge of the Bill of Rights explain to them.
He said the referendum is an important national process which individuals who are eligible to vote should participate.
He further encouraged congregants not abstain from voting in this year’s elections because their vote is a voice that spells out what they want in the next five years.
The church service was attended by MMD National Secretary Rapheal Nakacinda and MMD Chairperson for International Relations Amb Joyce Musenge from Lusaka who are in Eastern Province to drum up support for candidates standing on the MMD ticket including Party Vice President for Politics Mutolo Phiri who is contesting the Chipata Central Parliamentary seat.