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‘PROTECT ECZ AGAINST CARELESS TALK’

By OLIVER SAMBOKO
THERE is need to come up with a law that punishes individuals that make unsubstantiated accusations against the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ), Rainbow Party leader Wynter Kabimba has said.

Mr Kabimba said “careless” talk had the potential to undermine the electoral process and plunge the country into chaos.
He said this during the Presidential Summit organised by the ECZ to discuss the electoral processes ahead of the 2021 general election.
The summit was attended by President Edgar Lungu in his capacity as PF president and many other political leaders.
“Like it is with the judiciary, it is high time we came up with the law to punish people for making false and reckless statements against ECZ, they should be summoned to prove their allegations and when they fail, they are locked up,” he said.
Mr Kabimba observed that some political leaders were deliberately making unsubstantiated allegations against ECZ for political expediency.
He said it was such careless statements that led to the genocide in countries like Rwanda.
At the same summitt, ECZ chief executive officer, Patrick Shindano, called on political parties and other stakeholders to work together in cleaning up the voters’ register in readiness for next year’s polls.
Mr Shindano said the current register had over one million ghost voters and that the ECZ alone could not cleanse the system.
He said ECZ was within its mandate in undertaking all the activities and had the capacity to register nine million voters within the planed timeframe. Mr Shindano called on political parties to encourage their members to get NRCs and get registered as voters during the exercise.
UPND president, Hakainde Hichilema said there was no compliance of existing laws in the manner elections were conducted.
Golden Party leader Jackson Silavwe accused ECZ of being too defensive of its actions and activities and that it was making decisions without consulting stakeholders.
Forum for Democracy and Development (FDD) president, Edith Nawakwi, said there had been too much politics in responding to efforts of ECZ.
And UPPZ president Charles Chanda urged ECZ to act against erring political parties and urged leaders to tame their cadres to stop violence that characterises most elections in the country.

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