PF wants ECZ to bar UPND from upcoming by-elections

THE Patriotic Front (PF) has challenged the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) to enforce the electoral code of conduct and bar UPND from contesting the three forthcoming by-elections owing to their continuous violation of code through their continued violent activities against their opponents.
Given Lubinda, the PF vice president said ECZ has sufficient powers under the Electoral Processes Act and the electoral code of conduct to bar any political party or candidate who engages in electoral violence from contesting elections.

He said barring UPND was the only way ECZ may redeem its tattered reputation and win back some level of public confidence that has been eroded by the unprofessional conduct that has been exhibited especially in the case of Bowman Lusambo and Joseph Malanji.
“We challenge them to use their powers to bar UPND ECZ has an onerous and sacred duty to ensure free and fair elections,” he said.
Mr Lubinda said the conduct of ECZ has a significant role in entrenching democracy and ensuring peace and national security.
He said the PF has reported all the cases of violence to the police. That was why they were demanding that the culprits were brought to justice.
Mr Lubinda also said if President Hakainde Hichilema and the police do not want to act to end the political violence they shall be left with no option but to order their members to start defending themselves.
“We want to put this on record that Mr. Hichilema will be personally held accountable for any loss of life or property that may arise from the violence of his members,” Mr Lubinda said. He said it was odd that such acts of hooliganism were being perpetuated only a few weeks after President Hichilema co-hosted the Democracy Summit.
“Does this not vindicate those of us who declared the democracy summit a smoke screen and a hoax,” he said.

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