President Edgar Lungu has called on youths not to be used as tools of violence and appealed to Zambians to embrace dialogue.
Addressing the nation on the eve of Africa Freedom Day, which will be celebrated today under the theme silencing the guns creating conducive of conditions Africa’s development, the President said that youths must strive to promote peace and enhance co-existence and regretted that youths have lately been used as tools of violence.
President Lungu reminded the younger generation that the freedom they are enjoying today was attained by the fore-fathers who made great sacrifices to attain peace.
The President said that Zambia wants to see continent free of conflicts, and one that promotes peace and stability and urged Zambians to embrace the one Zambia One nation Motto.
President Lungu said that despite Zambia enjoying peace there is still a need to check certain vices that undermine the capacity to safeguard peace and achieve sustainable development.
President Lungu said that was needed to guard against vices such as tribalism, corruption, child marriages, and violation of human rights. President Lungu said that Zambia must also guard against emerging threats such as terrorism, cyber-crimes money laundering, and illicit financial flows. He emphasized that such and other vices can sabotage Zambia’s efforts to build a strong and resilient economy.
President Lungu also urged those in possession of illegal firearms to surrender them to the state, adding that, in doing so, they will be contributing to the eradication of the gun culture thereby promoting peace.
“As a country we have been implementing an arms amnesty initiative since 2011 which is also in line with the African Union Initiative to silence the guns by 2020.
Let me therefore urge those still in possession of illegal fire arms to surrender them to the state. In doing so you will be contributing to the eradication of the gun culture thereby promoting peace in our country.” Said President Lungu.
President Lungu said that Zambia has been implementing an arms amnesty initiative since 2011 which is also in line with the African Union Initiative to silence the guns by 2020.
He said anyone who will be found in possession of illegal firearms after the amnesty will be sternly dealt with under existing laws.
“Once this amnesty ends anyone found in possession of illegal fire arms will be sternly dealt with under our existing laws.” he said
The amnesty comes to an end on June 30th, 2020.
This year’s commemorations fall under the theme “Silencing the guns, creating conducive conditions for Africa’s development.”