Minister of Home Affairs Stephen Kampyongo says government will not take kindly to anybody or any political party perpetrating violence in the areas where by-election campaigns are taking place.

Kampyongo appealed to all political parties taking part in the ongoing campaigns in Sesheke constituency and Munkomba Ward in Lundazi District to refrain from any form of violence.

He was commenting on violent incidences in both parts of the country ahead of polling day on February 12, which involved both unruly PF and UPND cadres.

“The campaign period is the an opportunity accorded to all participating political parties to sell their party agenda to the people and not to begin attacking the same people you intend to serve and disrupting their businesses,” Kampyongo told journalists at a briefing in Lusaka, Thursday.

He, however, warned that any attack on police officers on duty was a direct attack on the whole service and government as they were constitutionally-mandated to provide security to people and property regardless of one’s political affiliation, ethnicity, colour or religion.

“I’m aware of some political parties that are reported to be mounting illegal road blocks and throwing stones at police officers…I’m directing the police command in these two provinces where by-election campaigns are taking place to intensify their operations and take note of all elements perpetrating violence and disrupting peace,” said Kampyongo.

And Katete District Commissioner Joseph Makukula urged the PF and UPND political parties in Chindwale Ward to practice issue-based campaigns to enable people make informed decisions.

In an interview, Makukula said politics were not meant to divide people, but for one to express democratic rights in a way that does not injure the other.

He also urged politicians to realize that despite the elections, they were all one as Zambians.

“There is no need for us to create enmity. Elections are actually not meant to bring in barriers, no! So, it is ideal that we think and practice mature politics so that it is left to the people to choose, which best candidate to represent them. Elections are not meant to divide us,” Makukula said.

He urged the warring parties to desist from violence.

“In the case of Chindwale Ward, we have only two political parties, which is PF and UPND and my advice to them is let them practice issued-based campaigns, let them bear in mind that we are all related as we might belong to different political parties, but we are one, we eat together, we live in the same house. So, fighting won’t achieve anything. It’s not good for other people to laugh at us politically, but if we show political maturity, believe you me we will be somewhere. Let’s avoid saying things that will divide us as a nation, said Makukula.