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UPND backpedals on Public Order Act

THERE is no need to amend the Public Order Act because it is fine the way it is, United Party for National Development (UPND) spokesperson Charles Kakoma has declared.

The UPND has made a U-turn after putting pressure on Government for many years to amend the Act, stating that it was disadvantaging the opposition.
In 2017, the United Nations Universal Periodic Review urged Government to reform the current Public Order Act to include measures that would fully uphold the rights to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly.
But Mr Kakoma said it was not necessary to amend the Act because in its current form it was good enough.
In an interview yesterday, Mr Kakoma said: “In fact the proposed amendments in the Public Order Act are even worse than the current one.
“So it is not going to help anybody, that is why they are insisting on going ahead with amending the Public Order Act because it favours them,” he said.
Mr Kakoma said amending the Public Order Act would just be creating more problems in the country than what was happening now.
Justice Minister, Given Lubinda, told journalists on Monday that now that Bill 10 which sought to amend the Public Order Act had been thrown away, the Act would remain the way it was.

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