THE PF is to blame for violence, there is too much poverty in the country, says a Livingstone clergy.
And Rev Boston Simumba, who is the priest-in-charge of the Christian Harvest Church, says tribal remarks in politics are a time bomb that need to be defused.
Meanwhile, Livingstone UPND district vice chairperson in-charge of political affairs Lutangu Fwanyanga says tribalism is a time bomb that needs to be defused.
In his submission to the Commission of Inquiry to examine the causes of the political violence and the root causes of the voting patterns between 2006 and 2016 chaired by justice Munalula Lisimba, Rev Simumba said politicians, when in power, talked as if all was fine, “but when out of office, things turn against them”.
“The PF is to blame [for violence], there is too much poverty. Look at the way contracts are being given out! Investors must be made to work alongside Zambians,” Rev Simumba said.
He added that the Public Order Act needed reform.
Rev Simumba said when opposition political leaders did not access their masses, they resorted to underhand methods.
“We need an independent body to control the Public Order Act,” he said.
Rev Simumba further said the church needed to be neural when dealing with political issues during and after campaigns.
He also said he was hurt by the tribal talk between the Bembas and the Tongas, saying “it was as if Zambia had only got two tribes”.
“Tribal remarks are a time bomb and only the church can defuse,” said Rev Simumba.
And Fwanyanga, who began his submission by stating the roles of the police, army, ZAF, ZNS and the Office of the President Special Division, said the men and women in uniform could perform better if left to work without political interference.
He said it was saddening now that political cadres could point a finger at a police commanding officer and threaten him or her with dismissal.
“I was happy in the manner the men and women worked while cleaning the streets due to cholera outbreak, they did not look at political affiliation, that is what we want,” Fwanyanga said.
He said the country needed a non-politically comprised judiciary and the Electoral Commission of Zambia.
Fwanyanga added that although he was not instigating for one, those who rule by the sword will fall by one.
He added that politicians should not go into areas and speak a different language during campaigns.
“Don’t campaign in Western Province using Bemba, that is an insult to the Lozi, it’s better to revert to English if you can’t speak Lozi,” Fwanyanga said.
Asked by the commission vice-chairperson Mervis Kasongo Chisanga on how the campaigns were in Livingstone, Fwanyanga said the city was a model of non-violence.
“We even share numbers with the PF, come here and learn how we do politics here in Livingstone, why hack each other in Lusaka? Is it because that is where the money is? We want other provinces especially ba Lusaka mwativuta (Lusaka you are a trouble), come here and learn,” said Fwanyanga.
“If you (commission) don’t sort out our problem, one day you will find that the country is on fire.”