President Edgar Lungu has declared Friday, August 13, as a public holiday. Secretary to Cabinet Simon Miti said the decision is meant to allow a smooth completion of the electoral process.
Zambians will be casting their votes in a general election on Thursday, August 12, 2021, which is also a public holiday.
According to Article 56 (2) of the Constitution Amendment bill No. 2 of 2016, the day on which a general election is held is a public holiday.
“His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia Mr. Edgar Chagwa Lungu has declared Friday, 13th August 2021, the day after the general elections as a public holiday. This, therefore, means that both Thursday, 12th August 2021 and Friday, 13th August 2021 shall be non-working days,” he said
Dr. Miti however said all institutions that provide essential services should ensure that they put measures in place to avoid disruption of services.
“As the country goes to the polls, the government wishes to appeal to all eligible voters to turn up in numbers on 12th August and exercise their right to vote. Further, as they exercise the right to vote, members of the public are urged to observe the Covid-19 guidelines to prevent the spread of the pandemic,” Dr. Miti said.
Meanwhile, the Prisons care and Counselling Association (PRISCA) Executive Director Godfrey Malembeka has disclosed that inmates in all the correctional facilities are ready to vote for the first time in this week, August 12, general elections.
Dr Malembeka said that the Association has managed to educate and sensitize inmates in various correctional facilities and also distributed ICE materials, radio and television sets as well as newspapers.
He said that the Association is still conducting voter education in the five provinces while five others have been given to 18 civil society organizations.
Dr Malambeka disclosed to ZANIS that funding was received from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) as well as other cooperating partners.
“We are targeting 29 correctional centers that are receiving voter education materials, radio and television sets and Personal Protective equipment (PPEs) in supplementing the efforts of the Electoral Commission of Zambia ahead of the elections,” he noted.
Dr Malembeka noted that few political parties have been to the correctional facilities to explain their manifestos.
He said that inmates have the desire to know what political parties have planned for them before they take office next week.