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ECZ suspends UPND campaigns in Ikelengi

THE Electoral Commission of Zambia has suspended the UPND from any form of campaigns in Ikelengi district.

And the Commission has also suspended Sioma Independent parliamentary candidate Albert Amukena Mundia from any campaigns.

ECZ acting chief electoral officer Royd Katongo said this follows the escalating political violence in selected parts of the country.

“The Electoral Commission of Zambia issued a statement on Friday 11th June 2021 noting with serious concern the escalating political violence in selected parts of the country. It further noted that these were mainly attributed to the Patriotic Front (PF) and the United Party for National Development (UPND),” he said. “The Commission reminded the political parties and candidates that the Electoral Code of Conduct which their leaders swore oath to applies to this period of campaigns and must be adhered to without exception. The Commission further stated that it would not hesitate to invoke the code of conduct and suspend indefinitely all manner of campaigns should these violent acts continue.”

Katongo said, sadly, the ECZ had observed the continued disregard of the Electoral Code of Conduct and the signed peace accords.

“Despite the counsel rendered, the vice has continued and thus far, escalated levels of violence were experienced in the following districts, Chisamba (Central Province), Ikelengi (North Western Province), Lusaka- Lusaka Province, Mumbwa (Nangoma Constituency) Central Province, Sioma (Western Province),” he said. “The Commission has pursuant to Article 229, Sub-article 2 (e) of the Republican Constitution and Subparagraphs 4 (1) (c) (d) (i) and 11 (d) of the Electoral Code of Conduct suspended indefinitely, with immediate effect, subject to review, all manner of political campaigns in the following districts and for respective political party/candidate; Ikelengi – United Party for National Development (UPND), Sioma Independent Parliamentary Candidate Mr Albert Amukena Mundia.”

Katongo said in this regard, the UPND and Mundia would not be allowed to conduct any form of campaigns in the said districts.

He said the Zambia Police should not allow any political activities by the affected party and candidate.

“The Commission is still reviewing other cases reported in Chisamba, Lusaka and Mumbwa, and appropriate action will be taken against any perpetrator for any violation of the Electoral Code of Conduct,” said Katongo. “The Commission further urges the media to provide fair, accurate and balanced reporting to all stakeholders in the electoral process and abide by the electoral code of conduct in election reporting.”

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