An electoral officer in Chama district has implored politicians from different political parties as well as all well-meaning Zambians to strictly adhere to the electoral code of conduct issued by the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ).
Chama District Electoral Officer in Muchinga province, John Sampa, made the call during the ECZ stakeholders’ election briefing in the district at the weekend.
The briefly mainly centered on educating those who are aspiring for various positions in the August 12, 2021 general election on the electoral process and conduct.
The political parties that attended the briefing included the ruling Patriotic Front (PF), opposition United Party for National Development (UPND), Socialist Party (SP), Movement for Democratic Party (MDC) and the Democratic Party (DP).
Mr. Sampa said the briefing will greatly help in clearing out certain concerns regarding the electoral process and enable stakeholders to make informed decisions.
“We are holding this briefing today so that all the participating political parties and their respective candidates are made aware of the requirements so that they prepare before,” he said.
And Mr. Sampa has reiterated that ECZ is an independent and autonomous institution mandated to hold free, fair and peaceful elections in Zambia.
He said this is why the commission always engages all political players on various issues concerning the electoral processes.
Mr. Sampa added that the ECZ has a legal mandate to perform constitutional and statutory functions with a range of responsibilities that include delimitation exercise, voter registration exercise, voter education, nominations as well as preparing for elections and administering various other elections.
And Chama South Returning Officer Rodgers Kumwenda, who closed the briefing on behalf of Mr. Sampa, said those who are aspiring for different positions and those who are re-contesting should abide by what was discussed in the briefing on the electoral process.
Mr. Kumwenda pointed out that issues of basic requirements and qualifications, as well as reporting time for filing in of nominations should be strictly adhered to.
“We are appealing to all the aspiring candidates to strictly adhere to the ECZ guidelines and requirements,” he said.
Meanwhile, political parties wishing to take part in the August 12 general election have commended the ECZ for guiding them on nominations before the process starts.
The political parties expressed happiness with the ECZ for organising such a briefing on the electoral process especially on the nomination process which they said will help them to make right decisions.
Nominations in the August 12 general election start with presidential and parliamentary candidates on May 17, followed by mayoral and council chairperson nomination on May 18 and lastly ward councillors on May 19.