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Africa Network rebukes PF, demands end to State brutalityBy Mirriam Chabala on 6 Mar 2018
The African Liberal Network (ALN) has implored the Zambian government to uphold ideals of the African Charter on human rights and good governance by departing from its dictatorial rule and allow democracy to prevail.
ALN has also asked the Zambian government to amend the Public Order Act; prevent the escalation of tension; political violence and state brutality.
According to a statement issued yesterday by ALN President Steven Mokgalapa of South Africa, the resolutions were made at the Africa Liberal Network meeting in Accra, Ghana, where more than 30 African countries observed that the Zambian government lacked commitment to national unity, good governance, respect for human rights, justice and the rule of law as enshrined in the African Charter on Democracy.
Mokgalapa stated that the meeting was also concerned that press freedom, freedoms of expression, assembly, movement, privacy and association were being trampled upon every day in Zambia, a country which used to be a beacon of democracy.
“Africa has expressed serious concerns on the deteriorating political situation in Zambia and urged the government to restore democracy in the country. More than 30 countries in Africa passed a resolution on Sunday in Accra, Ghana urging the Zambian government to depart from the path of dictatorship and allow democracy to prevail. The resolution was passed at the General Assembly of the Africa Liberal Network (ALN) meeting in Accra. The ALN is an organisation of 44 political parties from 30 countries in Africa. It is an associated organisation of Liberal International, the political family to which liberal democratic parties belong,” Mokgalapa stated.
“The meeting noted that the Zambian government lacked commitment to national unity, good governance, respect for human rights, justice and the rule of law as enshrined in the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance. The meeting also observed that Zambia was sliding into one party dictatorship as press freedom, freedoms of expression, assembly, movement, privacy and association were being trampled upon every day; while opposition political parties were denied the freedom to operate due to repression, state brutality and political violence. The meeting was concerned that the prevailing circumstances were fueling tension in the country, threatening peace and stability, thereby exposing the country and all its values to the dangers of civil strife, displacement and misery,” he stated.
The Network demanded that the Zambia government departs from its oppressive rule and follow the Africa Charter on Human Right, to which it was a signatory through the African Union.
“Following the concerns raised, Mokgalapa stated that the meeting resolved the following: “Now therefore, the Zambian government which is a member of the African Union and signatory to the African Union Agenda 2063, African Charter on Human Rights, African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance is implored to uphold the ideals of Agenda 2063 by doing the following: (i) depart from the path of dictatorship and allow democracy to prevail ; (ii) call upon the Zambian government to amend the Public Order Act and free political activity in keeping with democratic principles ; (iii) prevent the escalation of tensions, political violence and state brutality and give back to the citizens their normal lives ; (iv) stop cold blooded arrests and incarcerations of citizens as the case was with the incarceration of the UPND President Hakainde Hichilema in April 2017, on trumped up treason charges ; (v) stamp out corruption as it has created unbearable conditions for the majority of the citizens; and (v) uphold liberal values to level the political playing ground in line with competitive politics,” stated Mokgalapa.
The ALN General Assembly was hosted by the Progressive People’s Party of Ghana with support from the Liberal Democrats of the United Kingdom, Friedrich Naumann Foundation of Germany, The People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy (VVD) of the Netherlands and the Democrats 66 party of Europe.
About Mirriam Chabala
Mirriam Chabala is a Zambian journalist who covers current affairs and writes in-depth feature articles on social issues.
Email: mirriam [at] diggers [dot] news
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