What should it take for the opposition to hold intraparty elections under COVID-19 restrictions?

Davis Mwila says Patriotic Front intraparty elections will continue under COVID-19 restrictions.

Mwila says they have received expert advice pointing to the fact that COVID-19 “is still with us in Zambia and the worst is yet to come”.

Mwila says as everyone was aware, Zambia would hold general elections next year, “with or without COVID-19.”

“This therefore makes intraparty elections an absolute must. However, these intraparty elections shall be held and completed under very strict adherence to public health regulations, guidelines and certification vis-à-vis COVID-19. Against this background, elections in the party will continue under the new normal. As part of Patriotic Front’s democratic nature and in complying with Article 60 of the Republican Constitution, central committee re-affirmed its earlier resolution to conduct elections in the remaining six provinces,” says Mwila. “In this regard, the elections committee of the party is hereby guided to prepare and act accordingly. Once all the remaining provincial elections have been held, the central committee will receive a comprehensive report which shall guide preparations for the party’s general conference to be held under very strict adherence to the public health regulations, guidelines and certification vis-à-vis COVID-19.”

How is the Patriotic Front managing to hold their intraparty elections when the opposition is not able to do so and opposition members are being arrested for holding intraparty elections?

It will be better for the Ministry of Health state clearly what is required for political parties to hold such meetings and what procedures to follow.

Again, the issue of selective enforcement of the law comes up. There seems to be different laws for the opposition and the Patriotic Front. The Patriotic Front could hold its Central Committee meeting at Mulungushi International Conference Centre without much ado. But the opposition is not allowed to do the same!

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