The Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) has canceled the Kabwata Constituency parliamentary by-election slated for January 20.
This means that the commission has canceled ongoing campaigns pending announcement of new dates for the election and fresh nominations.
The move follows a letter of resignation that it received from the the UPP Candidate Francis Libanda.
Announcing the development ECZ electoral officer Patrick Nshindano said based on the initial correspondence of January 7 in which the said candidate sought to withdraw from the election, ECZ would have proceeded to hold the election as planned in accordance with The Electoral Process Act number 35 section 31(2).
Nshindano explained that section 31(2) empowers the commission to reject a withdrawal filed after close of nominations.
He however said based on the second correspondence received from the said candidate today, in which he invoked article 56 (6) of the Constitution of Zambia through resignation, the commission was left with no choice but to cancel the election and call for fresh nominations.
Nshindano said that the cancellation of the election was unfortunate and a waste of resources which could have been channeled to other needy areas.
He said the Commission would proceed to have a fresh printing of ballot papers from Dubai after nominations and discard the earlier consignment of ballot papers which was scheduled to arrive tomorrow.
He also said the candidates that would be filing nominations for the second time would be required to pay fresh nominations fees.