THE UNITED PARTY FOR NATIONAL DEVELOPMENT APPLAUDS THE JOINT STATEMENT BY THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY ON THE UP COMING ZAMBIAN GENERAL ELECTIONS
The UPND welcomes the Joint Statement by the Embassies and High Commissions of Australia, Canada, Japan, Switzerland, United Kingdom, and the United States of America Accredited to the Republic of Zambia.
The statement by our partners, is both timely and significant, as it comes at a time when Zambia is about to hold its general elections, and also at a time when the ugly head of violence, hate speech, disinformation and wild distortion of facts by the PF and its surrogates against the UPND leader and the Party, are beginning to take a centre stage. The unbridled hate such as recently demonstrated publicly by PF cadres, through the burning and defacing of UPND regalia, accompanied by the spew of insults against the UPND President, and the intimidation by police that made it impossible for the UPND youths to officially Commission their mobilisation centre on 1 May 2021, certainly did not go unnoticed by all, including the international community. Neither did the persistent blatant lies and falsifications by a known PF surrogate agitating for the blockage of the leading Presidential contender, UPND President Hakainde Hichilema from filing in his nomination for Presidency, go unnoticed by all.
It is therefore with great gratitude that the UPND acknowledges and applauds the timely intervention by the international community. This is as it should be for failure to speak out candidly against such ills, emboldens those who agitate for anarchy. The lessons of the 2016 highly disputed elections are still too fresh to forget, hence unless the international community continues to impress upon the ruling party the critical need to respect the rule of law and human rights, and the need for a transparent, consultative and inclusive electoral process, managed by a none compromised Electoral Commission, the likelihood of chaos and instability during the electoral period, particularly as the country draws closer to election day remains real.
On our part, President Hakainde Hichilema and his team at large, would like to assure you of our continued commitment to work towards a peaceful issue based campaign. It is our fervent hope that the ruling Party, on its part, will also do the same by ensuring a level playing field such as through equal access to media, and equal and fair application of the law, and ensuring an electoral process that is devoid of violence.
Finally, once again, the UPND most heartedly thanks the international community, and greatly appreciates its support to the people of Zambia by ensuring that democratic tenets are upheld in the country.
Chairperson, International Relations
United Party for National Development