The Zambia United National Freedom Fighters Association (ZUNFFA) has urged political parties participating in this week’s general elections set for Thursday, August 12 to restrain their cadres from engaging in political violence.
Referring to sporadic incidences of political violence especially between the ruling PF and the UPND ahead of the crucial elections this Thursday, ZUNFFA Co Patron Sikota Wina says it is saddening to hear of people being killed over elections.
He said this during a press briefing held at his residence ahead of this Thursday’s general elections dubbed for August 12, 2021.
Dr Wina pointed out that acts of violence being perpetuated by some political parties have the potential to dent the country’s image to the international community.
Stressing that Zambia is known to the outside world as a peaceful country , Dr Wina stated that there is need to safeguard the country’s image.
“ Why people should lose their lives over an election when our fathers lost their lives during the liberation struggle, “Dr Sikota wondered .
He stressed that the peace currently prevailing in the country should not be taken for granted as it costed lives of freedom fighters.
Ahead of this Thursday’s general elections , the country has witnessed a number of political violence incidences, the latest being the murder of two PF members allegedly at the hands of UPND.
The development attracted rising concerns of various political players and the church.
Meanwhile, Dr Sikota has appealed to political parties contesting in this week’s general elections to accept the outcome of the elections.
Dr Sikota stressed that the outcome of the general elections should be accepted and respected by the contenders as it will reflect the will of the Zambian people.
Speaking earlier, ZUNFFA National Chairperson George Chewe has thanked the government for initiating programmes aimed at empowering freedom fighters.
Mr Chewe observed that for a long time freedom fighters were neglected by successive governments reducing them to destitutes.
“ The PF administration has restored our dignity through the implementation of social protection programmes such as the social cash transfer and the presidential empowerment programme, “ he said.
And Mr Chewe says the political party that will emerge victorious in the August 12 general elections must ensure that the policy on freedom fighters gets enacted.
He said the enactment of the policy will help in safeguarding the welfare of the freedom fighters.
Mr Chewe thanked the government for having started the process of enacting the policy on freedom fighters.
Speaking at the same event ZUNFFA National Treasurer Mama Betty Chilunga urged the electorate to turn out in numbers and cast their vote.
Meanwhile, A senior citizen in Serenje appeals for peace ahead of polls.
Serenje 10 August, 2021, ZANIS —- A senior citizen in Serenje district in Central Province Flackson Soko has called on Zambians to remain peaceful during and after the August 12 elections.
Mr. Soko aged 80 says rather than resorting to violence , Zambians should instead fight for peace and development through the ballot to control the destiny of the country.
” There is no need for Zambians to fight physically during and after these elections. The fight should only be in the ballot,” Mr. Soko said.
Mr. Soko in an interview observed that Zambians are peace loving and called on government to help maintain peace during the election period.
Mr. Soko also called on police and the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) to be professional as it carries out its mandate to ensure free ,fair and peaceful the elections on Thursday.
” Police and ECZ should avoid being bias towards a certain political party as they do their work during the elections to prevent violence and deliver a free am fair elections that represent the people’s will,” Mr Soko urged.
The senior citizen further appealed to the would be losers in the race to accept the results or if aggrieved, take the matter to court to forestall violence.
Recently two ruling Patriotic Front cadres were murdered in cold blood after an attack by the rival United Party for National Development ( UPND) in Lusaka. This development has unsettled many political players and stakeholders who includes the church.
This Thursday, 12 August , Zambia goes to the polls to elect the next government for the next five years. President Lungu is among the 16 presidential candidates vying for the Presidential seat.