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POLITICAL PARTIES BACK EU OBSERVATION ON FUNDING

By OLIVER SAMBOKO

Political party leaders have backed European Union observation that Zambia should enact a law that compels political parties to reveal campaign finance.

United Liberal Party (ULP) leader Sakwiba Sikota and Green Party (GP) president Peter Sinkamba, both said the EU suggestion is welcome because this should have been done a long time ago considering that the constitution requires that political parties should be accountable and transparent in terms of their source of funding.

However, Mr Sikota was quick to say that before such a law can be enacted and implemented, the state should first start funding political parties.

“As the EU advocate for the enactment of a law to compel political parties to reveal campaign finance, they should also at the same time push that the state should start funding political parties,” he said.

Mr Sikota said political parties were spending a lot of money on campaigns during elections and that it will be interesting to know the source of funding to ensure the funds are clean. 

And Mr Sinkamba said because of selfishness of political parties, once a party ascend to power, leaders have a tendency of dragging their feet on the issue because of fearing that in the long run, they will be caught in the web. 

He said the country should be careful and avoid the risk of political parties mortgaging the country to terrorist organisations. 

“Because a political party is captured by a terrorist organisation, the risk can be that the country may have a situation where terrorist activities start mushrooming,” Mr Sinkamba said.

He said terrorism is fast spreading in the world so there is need to ensure that terrorist organisations are not allowed to have a hand in the internal politics of the country.

“The country should enact the law because leaving it the way it is, the country risk having mercenaries and terrorists sponsoring political parties in the country,” he said.

Mr Sinkamba also called on government to ensure that the political party’s bill is enacted in parliament as it will provide for most of the things the EU has suggested.

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