By ROGERS KALERO
THE UPND will now be holding public meetings with or without a police permit, Copperbelt provincial youth chairman Ronald Manenga has declared.
Mr Manenga has also demanded the removal of Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) chairperson, Esau Chulu, charging that he was the mastermind of rigging in the 2016 elections.
He said the UPND was now “tired” of being denied permits to hold meetings and so the youth had now resolved to hold meetings with or without notifying the police.
Mr Manenga was speaking in Kitwe yesterday when he addressed UPND youths after their leaders advised them against holding a peaceful protest over ECZ’s online voter re-registration.
He said the party would soon embark on party mobilisation drives on the Copperbelt and would soon inform the police about their programmes.
“But if the police deny us the permits, we will go ahead with our programmes with or without the police permits because we are now tired of the police of denying us permits for public meetings.
“Even today, we would have gone ahead with our peaceful protests with or without the police permit if our leaders did not guide us against proceeding with the protest. We would have gone ahead and the police would not have handled us, because we are too many,” he said.
He said the failed protest against the online voter re-registration would be revived if nothing sensible comes out from the meeting between the ECZ stakeholders’ meeting. Mr Manenga claimed that the online voter re-registration and the deleting of the 2016 voters register was a step towards rigging the 2021 elections.
He said the ECZ under Justice Chulu was a fraud and so it was important that the UPND youths were allowed to protest.
He demanded that Mr Chulu and Deputy Inspector General of police for operations, Bonnie Kapeso, should be removed from their positions because they were bringing confusion in the two institutions.
And UPND national youth vice chairperson, Sibetta Mutelo, said the problem was not the PF or President Edgar Lungu, but the problem was Mr Chulu because he was the mastermind of election rigging.
Ms Mutelo said the UPND wold ensure that Mr Chulu was removed from his position because there would be nothing for the opposition in 2021 if he continued to be the chairperson at the ECZ.
By ROGERS KALERO