The Non-Governmental Organisations’ Coordinating Council ( NGOCC ) has condemed the invasion of LAZ offices by PF cadres and described the act as barbaric and misguided.
In a statement released to the media, NGOCC said that the the levels of lawlessness by the ruling party was appalling and very retrogressive to democratic dispensation, adding that it was totally unacceptable for cadres of the ruling party to conduct themselves in such a barbaric manner.
Below is the full statement
NGOCC CONDEMNS PF ATTACKS ON LAZ
The Non-Governmental Organisations’ Coordinating Council ( NGOCC ) condemns, in the strongest terms, the barbaric and misguided attacks on the Law Association of Zambia ( LAZ) by cadres of the Patriotic Front Party (PF).
While we recognize that every citizen has a democratic right to express their views on any public institution, the attacks towards the LAZ and in particular towards the LAZ President Ms Linda Kasonde are unwarranted and clearly meant to intimidate the Association from playing it’s rightful role as a legal advisory. As the custodian of the law, LAZ has every right to defend the mutilation of our Constitution by those who yield political power.
The levels of lawlessness by the ruling party are appalling and very retrogressive to democratic dispensation. It is totally unacceptable for cadres of the ruling party to conduct themselves in such a barbaric manner. It must be appreciated that LAZ is an autonomous body with clearly articulated governance structures through which measures can be taken should it be established that LAZ had misconducted itself. The actions by the cadres are meant to intimidate LAZ especially it’s President from discharging her duties as a duly elected leader of the association.
We are especially concerned that if this trend of intimidation of institutions such as LAZ continue, the voices of citizens, especially women, as well as their vested interest will be suppressed even more.
We demand that Ms. Kasonde be allowed to discharge her duties free of intimidation and personal attacks. As the women’s movement we stand with Ms. Kasonde and support her in her endeavors as LAZ president.
We further appeal to the leadership of the PF to immediately stop this hooliganism by its cadres. The ramifications of this trend is obviously stifled freedom of expression and of the press and is an unfortunate recipe for killing our democracy.
The women’s movement is therefore calling upon all Zambians to stand up and reject this perpetuation of undemocratic tendencies of the PF.
Engwase B. Mwale