Samuel Kasoleka, says Julian Mwape Director General Zambia Agency for Persons with Disabilities lied that his sister Miriam Kasoleka aged 80 was attacked when she and others went to present their petition on Bill 10 at UPND leader Hakainde Hichilema’s residence.
Mr Kasoleka on Sunday visited the UPND secretariat to clear out reports that her sister who does not even know anything about Bill 10 was among those who went to present a petition at Mr. Hichilema’s residence.
And Ms Miriam Kasoleka confessed that she was picked from her home in the guise that she was going to collect her social welfare fund.
She also confirmed been attacked but that she did not know the location as that happened while she was on the hired bus.
Her brother, Samuel Kasoleka expressed disappointment at how her sister could be involved in Bill 10 issues she is not even aware of.
He appealed to Ms. Mwape not to involve an innocent person like Mr. Hichilema in an issue that he is not aware of for political mileage.
Mazabuka Central Member of Parliament, Garry Nkombo who welcomed the Kasoleka family thanked them for clearing Mr. Hichilema’s name as he demanded answers from ZAPID, police and Minibus driver on what happened on that fateful day.
Meanwhile, the Patriotic Front (PF) has said that it is shocked by UPND’s cold-heartedness to the extent of parading an old disabled woman who happens to be a victim of their own violence.
PF Media Director Sunday Chanda says the differently-abled persons have made representation to among other stakeholders the ruling Patriotic Front lobbying to be included in the governance processes of Zambia.
Mr. Chanda says the PF never claimed that their coming to engage and deliberate on this key human rights issue was stage-managed.
He says the PF welcomed them; heard and listened to their concerns and resolved to prioritize their representation in Parliament because it is a crucial human rights issue and they did not and do not even wish to know how the community mobilized itself to come and meet us – it was immaterial.
Mr. Chanda said it is not in dispute that members of the differently-abled community went to UPND leader’s residence in an attempt to lobby him and his MPs who include Mazabuka MP Garry Nkombo to support their representation in Parliament as pronounced by Bill 10.
He said in return the differently-abled community was received with violence from Mr. Hichilema’s security and the old women paraded today by the UPND were stoned and injured in the process.
“Attempts by UPND to reduce such an important undertaking to lobby for support from Mr. Hichilema and his MPs by differently-abled persons is nonsensical, cheapest and childish propaganda by a Party that remains opposed to the inclusion of the differently-abled persons in Parliament”, he said.
Mr. Chanda said it is a shame and an indictment on the UPND and Mazabuka MP Gary Nkombo to attempt to label a leader of the differently-abled community, a woman in the name of Ms. Julien Mwape.
“What else does Hon Nkombo expect a leader of this community to do in lobbying different stakeholders in order for her Constituency to be represented in Parliament? The lack of remorse from the UPND is worrying. How the differently-abled community organized itself is immaterial. What is crucial is that as this community attempted to lobby stakeholders on the need for them to be represented in Parliament, they were met with violence from Mr. Hichilema’s security”, he added.
Mr. Chanda said if at all there was any semblance of morality, UPND should have used today’s parading of a woman they have been intimidating in Chilanga, to apologize and state their stance on the representation of differently-abled persons in Parliament.
He said what is not in a contest is that Mr. Hichilema’s security unleashed violence against a defenseless and unarmed community adding that what is also not in the contest is that UPND does not support the inclusion of differently-abled persons in the governance system of Zambia.
In a statement, Mr. Chanda said the UPND does not want youths and women represented in Parliament too.
He said the differently-abled community in Zambia and beyond can be assured that they have a friend in the Patriotic Front. We refuse to reduce their quest for representation in Parliament to cheap political debate as Hon Nkombo and UPND just demonstrated a while ago.