It’s very difficult to conceive of a multiparty political dispensation where only one political party and its leaders are allowed to have rallies, meetings, press briefings, and visits of its structures at will and without hindrance.
Mr Hakainde Hichilema and his party, the UPND, are today enjoying unfettered exercise of their freedoms of assembly, association, expression, and speech at the exclusion of the opposition and all others.
The public order Act and other related laws don’t seem to apply to them at all.
And on everything else, Mr Hichilema is a shameless blame shifter.
Seeking to exercise our constitutionally guaranteed fundamental human rights is not the pursuit of politics of confrontation or insolence.
We know very well that when they were in opposition, they were partially denied these rights. But it shouldn’t be a matter of revenge. An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth will leave them blind and snaggletoothed.
If they’re mature politicians, they’ve got to break the cycle of abuses and mistreatment of political opponents.
Without a doubt, Mr Hichilema and the UPND endured a lot of injustice, and the nation aligned in sympathy for them, but they have squandered that goodwill. They have messed this up!
Mr Hichilema seems to be a one-string guitar. The only tool he has is a hammer, and he doesn’t seem to understand the need for tolerance, self- limitation, and modesty. Anything he sees in front of him, no matter how small or insignificant, he has to pound it down with full force.
But this approach is very destructive and dangerous. This he must be mindful of and not be excited with power recklessly.
We have repeatedly warned that this country will not be a good place for any of us to live in if it’s not a good place for all of us to live in.
When fundamental rights and freedoms are denied, they are always fought for. This is the reality Mr Hichilema and his corrupt puppet regime must be ready for!
We shall fearlessly defend our liberties, human dignity, and rights.
We will not allow Mr Hichilema to use power and privilege to constrain our efforts and existence in this country to maintain the status quo.
By Fred M’membe
President of the Socialist Party