Sunday, March 3, 2024

Interparty Dialogue calls for progressive inclusion of new constituencies

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The Zambia Centre for Interparty Dialogue has called for progressive inclusion of new constituencies and provinces arising from the delimitation process being conducted by the Electoral Commission of Zambia.

ZCID Spokesperson Elizabeth Chitika says the implementation of the delimitation process recommendations should respond to both service delivery and the country’s fiscal position to avoid creating a super governance structure that gobbles huge resources at the expense of human development.

Mrs Chitika said before the recommendations are submitted to Parliament for possible enactment by the ECZ, broad based consensus has to be built amongst political parties and stakeholders to avoid politicization of this important national matter vital to enriching Zambia’s democracy.

Meanwhile, Mrs Chitika has cautioned ECZ over the reported printing of ballot papers in Dubai for the 2021 general elections to avoid speculations and mistrust.

She said the announcement made by the ECZ, that stakeholders will have to sponsor themselves to monitor the printing of ballot papers outside the country has the capacity to inflame tensions and mistrust and further intoxicate the political atmosphere.

“As a platform for political parties in Zambia whose constituent members are directly affected by this pronouncement, we are extremely concerned that ECZ has not adequately consulted and as such it will have a negative bearing on the 2021 general elections”, she added.

She noted that in 2019, there were pronouncements from government that printing of ballot papers could be done locally and has since urged the government to update the nation of this pronouncement.

Mrs Mulobeka has urged the ECZ to convene a stakeholder’s meeting where they can be able to engage directly in order to find amicable solutions acceptable to all.

She has further called on the ECZ to suspend the tendering process of printing ballot papers until stakeholders concerns are dealt with satisfactorily.

Mrs Chitika said ECZ has a responsibility to ensure that the process and outcome of elections has the support and legitimized by the majority citizenry, political parties and stakeholders alike.

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