2021 poll materials to be printed locally, orders Lungu

Thu, 23 Mar 2017 10:35:36 +0000

 

By ANNIE ZULU

THE 2021 presidential and general election materials will be printed in Zambia, President Edgar Lungu has said.

President Lungu has instructed the Government Printers that the election materials must be printed locally at Zambia Printing Company.

He said Government would do everything possible to ensure that 2021 election ballot papers were printed in the country.

The President was speaking to journalists after he toured Zambia Printing Company yesterday.

“We are printing ballot papers locally, whether opposition political parties like it or not and I am inviting everyone to visit and see the preparations Government is making to ensure that the 2021 ballot papers are printed at Zambia Printing Company,” President Lungu said.

He also instructed the Government to secure the Zambia Printing Company and ensure that it becomes fully operational by 2021.

“In the previous years, we have been printing ballot papers outside the country, but we cannot afford to develop this country if we continue taking money to other countries to do things we can do locally. We are capable of doing this here and we will do it,” he said.

He reiterated that Government would provide necessary equipment needed for the Zambia Printing Company to print ballot papers in the country.

And President Lungu has charged that those who were opposed to printing the ballot papers locally should explain why.

He said UPND leader Hakainde Hichilema who had continued claiming that his votes were stolen had failed to provide proof.

“We do not want people to petition that we are stealing votes because despite being told that I have stolen votes in the last elections they have never told me how many votes I allegedly stole and from where?

“If I stole votes to become President of Zambia, Mr Hichilema must show me the votes I stole in Chawama, Matero, Dundumwezi and elsewhere, add them and show me that this is what I have stolen,” President Lungu said.

Meanwhile, the Head of State said it would be meaningless to think that someone from outside Zambia would develop the country.

He said it was the duty of every Zambian to develop the country and protect its people.

President Lungu also observed that the printing company had over the years been neglected at the expense of the Zambian taxpayer’s money and that it was now time to make use of it.

“We had ballot papers printed in South Africa at one time, then Dubai recently. If we support this department we will serve a lot of money,” he said.

The President disclosed that what was needed mostly to print ballots at the Zambia Printing Company was installation of CCTV to ensure all processes were being monitored and that this had been done already.

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