WHAT is the fuss behind the news of deploying a peace-keeping force during the period leading to that elections that fall tomorrow?
In any given election environment, peace is cardinal and from what has happened in some parts of the country, where political violence cases have been reported and in some cases leading to the loss of life, the deployment of the military is justifiable.
Even though people have got the right to vote, they can only enjoy doing that in a peaceful and safe environment.
The presence of the police command, the army and other security wings before, during and after elections is mainly to provide safety measures and give the public confidence to vote and move about freely.
With the assurance from the Zambia Army Commander Lieutenant General William Sikazwe that the army will effectively ensure that security and peace are maintained ahead of and after the August 12 general elections, it is only befitting that the electorate looks at the positive side of this move.
There is currently a lot of propaganda doing rounds on social media which is a recipe for civil unrest; this is the reason why the army should be on standby to help police quell any meaningless agitation.
Like the fire brigade whose mandate is not only to quench fires, the army also performs a number of other duties apart from the obvious task of protecting the country against external aggression.
Some of these tasks are to ensure that citizens were assisted to vote in an environment that did not expose them openly to the COVID-19 pandemic which has presented new challenges during polls.
Those uncomfortable with the presence of the defense forces during election time should be comforted by the Army Commander Gen. Sikazwe’s guarantee that no one should be intimidated by fear but instead know that the Zambia Army was there to protect them during and after the elections.
We agree with the Gen Sikazwe that this was a right decision made at the right time and has instantly brought calm.
If this decision was not made we would have continued to have unruly behaviour if mainly cadres.
We support his decision. It was a decision made with good intentions.