Rainbow Party General Secretary Wynter Kabimba has asked the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) to investigate reports that PF cadres attacked the UPND candidate in Chilanga and disqualify the ruling party once found wanting.
Commenting on an incident where UPND candidate for Chilanga Charmaine Musonda and her entourage were attacked on their way to address community members in Chimanja ward on Sunday, Kabimba said ECZ should take interest in the matter and take the necessary action or the Commission risked being misunderstood.
“In the meeting that was held at ECZ on 30th April, there was a meeting of political parties that was held, and I remember the date because I as at the farm and I asked Chikwelete to attend. ECZ made it very clear in that meeting that they would not tolerate violence or any political party perpetrating violence in the Chilanga by-election campaign. The chairman himself, Judge Chulu, said that any political party that was going to perpetrate violence, the ECZ has powers to disqualify that political party from continuing to participate in the campaigns. We have a story here now that PF attacked the UPND and our position is that we would like ECZ to investigate this matter thoroughly, and if it is established that indeed PF cadres attacked UPND cadres, they must disqualify the Patriotic Front from this election, as they themselves stated in that meeting,” Kabimba said.
He said the ECZ would be considered biased against the opposition if it failed to disqualify the PF from contesting the election once it is established that the UPND candidate was truly attacked by PF supporters.
“If they don’t, then it would be clear that the Electoral Commission of Zambia is compromised and it is biased against opposition political parties and it is in favour or can turn a blind eye to anything that the Patriotic Front cadres do, especially in the perpetration of violence. That the PF is the political party that is now undermining the growth of democracy in the country. We want to see ECZ take action against perpetrators of violence, this incidence should not be looked at as a one-off incident. It must be used to set an example to all the political parties, that ECZ shall not tolerate violence. And hence protect members of the public who want to go out and vote and also protect the participants of political parties in any election,” said Kabimba.