MINISTRY of Information and Broadcasting Services Permanent Secretary Amos Malupenga says government has arranged satellite areas where those with neither invitation cards nor tickets will gather to watch the inauguration of President-Elect Hakainde Hichilema.
And UPND secretary general Patrick Mucheleka says due to space limitations, Heroes Stadium can only accommodate about 50,000 people.
Meanwhile, a member of the inauguration committee Raphael Muyanda has announced that there will be braais in selected areas to celebrate the occasion.
Speaking at a press briefing, Monday, Malupenga said the satellite areas included the Olympic Youth Development Centre, Woodlands Stadium and Nkoloma Stadium.
He advised members of the public wishing to enter Heroes Stadium to collect tickets from the secretariat of political parties which were members of the UPND Alliance.
“Due to the overwhelming interest shown by the citizens of Zambia to follow the proceedings of the ceremony, government has arranged satellite areas where people may gather to view the gatherings on the large screens. The satellite areas are the Olympic Youth Development Centre, Woodlands Stadium and Nkoloma Stadium. Further, the government has also facilitated for the proceedings of the ceremony to be broadcast live on TV, radio and online platforms,” Malupenga said.
“All members of the general public, apart from invited guests who have invitation cards wishing to enter Heroes Stadium are advised to collect tickets from the secretariat of political parties that are members of the UPND Alliance. Citizens that will not be able to attend the ceremony in person or to gather at designated satellite venues are encouraged to follow the proceedings on television, radio, and social media platforms that will be streaming live the event.”
Malupenga said preparations for the ceremony had been completed, reiterating that invited guests should be seated by 09:00 hours.
“Government wishes to inform members of the public that preparations for the inauguration are complete and that the government is ready to host the inauguration ceremony tomorrow (Tuesday). Members of the general public may also wish to know that the inauguration ceremony is a public event open to everyone. Government has consequently put measures in place to ensure that all citizens both home and abroad follow the proceedings of the ceremony,” said Malupenga.
“The government wishes to reiterate its earlier call to the invited guests and members of the general public to arrive early at Heroes Stadium to facilitate for security screening. Security will be heightened at the stadium to ensure peace, law and order are not compromised. The gates to the stadium will open at 06:00 and members of the general public should be seated at 09:00.”
And Mucheleka said due to limitations of space, Heroes Stadium could only accommodate about 50,000 people.
“All of us in the UPND party wish to invite Zambians across the provinces and in the diaspora to be part of the proceedings tomorrow. However, due to the limitations of space at the Heroes Stadium, the stadium can only accommodate a maximum of 50,000 or thereabout. And we may have a situation where you have more people than 50,000 turning up and obviously that will call for a situation where at some point the stadium could be closed once that number is reached,” said Mucheleka.
Meanwhile, a member of the inauguration committee Raphael Muyanda said there would be braai.
“We are in the mood for celebrations. There will be sporadic areas or isolated areas where there will be braaiing of meat. That is how we celebrate when there is a wedding, a big party like this sponsored by His Excellency the President, Hakainde Hichilema who is also a commercial farmer. We owe the community a duty of giving them excitement by a bit of braai. Who doesn’t want to have a T-bone on an occasion like that?” asked Muyanda.