By SILUMESI MALUMO
THE nomination fees are still high and unacceptable, and need to be reduced further because many will be disadvantaged, Third Liberation Party has said.
Party president Enock Tonga said the fees would disadvantage especially the youths who had nothing to offer but they want to contest for political positions.
Mr Tonga said in an interview yesterday, if Electoral Commission of Zambia went ahead with the proposed nomination fees this would be unfair to people who were struggling to earn a living during this difficult times.
The Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) has reduced to K100, 000 from K150, 000 the presidential nomination fee for the 2021 general elections after stakeholders rejected the proposal of K150, 000, describing it as prohibitive.
According to the latest proposals, male aspiring presidential candidates are expected to pay K100, 000 while female, youth and disabled State House hopefuls will have to pay K80, 000 from the earlier proposal of K120, 000.
Men aspiring to be Members of Parliament will have to pay the commission K20, 000, a reduction from the earlier proposal of K25, 000.
Female, youths and disabled candidates will be required to pay K15, 000 from the earlier K20, 000. Mayors will also pay K20, 000 a reduction from the earlier proposal of K25, 000.
But Mr Tonga said the reduction did not change anything because many would fail to raise the said money in order to contest the political position.
“These fees are prohibitive, to say the truth especially the youths will be disadvantaged. Where are they going to get the money if they are struggling to earn a living because of the dwindling economy.
We are appealing to ECZ to consider reducing further so that it be in conformity with the current economic situation in the country. It is important that the Commission listens to the cry of the people and not play politics in such serious issues,” Mr Tonga said.