Congrats Kabwata electorate on peaceful polls
Published On February 4, 2022 » 3520 Views» By Times Reporter » Opinion
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IF there is anything the people of Kabwata Constituency in Lusaka have demonstrated, it is the fact that peace has become a reality in the country’s electoral system.
Gone are the days when elections where a matter of life and death; when electoral violence had become endemic and violence was the order of the day whenever rival political party cadres met.
The wielding of machetes and discharging of firearms in public was synonymous with political campaigns no matter where an election was taking place.
Police officers where compromised and those who tried to do their work professionally ended up being penalised while a good number lost their jobs.
But the campaigns for the Kabwata parliamentary by-election started and ended on a peaceful note and so was the voting, even when the poll had to be cancelled at some point when a candidate pulled out after filing in of nominations.
This is as it should be.
We, therefore, commend the ruling United Party for National Development (UPND) which, through President Hakainde Hichilema and the rank and file of the party, has demonstrated political will by constantly speaking, in no uncertain terms, against political violence.
The President has on many occasions clearly said he would not protect any party cadre from any political party, including the UPND, who shall be found perpetrating wrongdoing.
He has encouraged the police to deal with violent cadres and has promised not to meddle with the work of law enforcement agencies, such as the police and the investigative wings.
He has called upon the police, in particular, to be free and discharge their duties professionally without fear of repercussions.
Political violence is now history, just like the infamous party cadres who once roamed markets and bus stations where they intimidated people and collected money illegally.
Congratulations to the electorate in Kabwata for the peaceful by-election.
The congratulations should equally be extended to the participating political parties, the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) and indeed the police who have been instrumental in ensuring that peace prevails.
It should be remembered that in the aftermath of the August 12, 2021 general elections, which were followed by a smooth transition of power from one political party leader to another, the country won global admiration from far and wide.
United States President Joe Biden was among world leaders who publicly commended Zambia for demonstrating exemplary democratic credentials of the free world.
As the people of Kabwata Constituency turn a new page with their newly elected Member of Parliament (MP), yesterday’s by-election should be yet another indication of the bright future that beckons for Zambia.
It must be a future where politics are not a preserve of certain people only, but that access to leadership positions as well as opportunities, rights and privileges must be for every Zambian regardless of age, gender, colour or creed.
As for the new MP, welcome to this era of servant leadership where the people come first.

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