Zambia map

On Tuesday, Zambian President Edgar Lungu announced that this year’s general elections will be held on August 11.

Zambia mapThe announcement follows the signing into law of a bill that ushers in the country’s new constitution. The new constitution has provided that elections will be held during the second Thursday of August during an election year. Previously, it was the president who used to announce the day of elections.

“Since we passed the amendment bill in parliament, we were aware that the election will be held on August 11. So this is no surprise for us. We are ready for the elections,” Nevers Mumba, leader of the opposition Movement for Multiparty Democracy (MMD) told Xinhua in a telephone interview.

Mumba, who is also Zambia’s former vice-president, said the embedment of the date of election in the country’s constitution was good because it gives all participants a level playing field.

“This is good because it gives us predictability unlike in the past when the announcement of the election day was the preserve of the sitting president. This gives all of us an opportunity to prepare adequately,” he added.

He however hoped that the governing Patriotic Front (PF) and the police will stop abusing the Public Order Act to stop opposition political parties from conducting campaigns, adding that the mere announcement of the election day signals the start of the election campaign.

Charles Kakoma, spokesperson of the main opposition United Party for National Development (UPND), said his party was ready for the election and expressed optimism that the party will emerge victorious.

The opposition spokesperson further urged the governing party to ensure peaceful campaigns by taming their members who have gone on the rampage perpetrating violence.

“PF must lead by example before telling others on the need to promote peaceful campaigns. Their members have gone on the rampage causing violence all over and we hope that the president’s call for peaceful campaigns is not only meant for the opposition but for the ruling party as well,” he added. Enditem

Source: Xinhua

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