An alliance of opposition political parties has been born with its leaders pledging to endevour to field one presidential candidate for the 2016 tripartite elections and former Prime Minister in the UNIP government General Malimba Masheke has been chosen as chairman.
The MMD, Alliance for a Better Zambia (ABZ), People’s Party (PP) and Zambia Empowerment Democracy (ZED) have formed the Alliance of Opposition Political Parties in Zambia.
MMD vice-president for political affairs Michael Kaingu, People’s Party president Mike Mulongoti and ZED president Fred Mutesa attended the briefing.
Announcing the alliance at a media briefing at Chrisma Hotel yesterday, ABZ leader Frank Bwalya said the formation of the Alliance for Opposition Political Parties in Zambia was a response from the general citizenry for a strong and united opposition that would effectively provide checks and balances to the Patriotic Front (PF) excesses.
The Alliance for Opposition Political Parties under the motto ‘Save Zambia, Zambia Deserves Better’ has also committed itself to unite in the by-elections by fielding a common candidate as a way of strengthening the alliance.
Fr Bwalya who is the spokesperson of the alliance said there was no doubt that Zambia’s future was bleak and at risk of having the economic, political and social strides the country attained reversed by the PF government that was preoccupied with political entrenchment.
He said Zambians had loudly spoken about the deteriorating governance performance of the country under the PF government and that time had come for the opposition to form a united and strong opposition to save Zambia from the PF regime. “Violation of human rights, abuse of power and corruption have become the order of the day under the PF regime. Zambians are suffering because the PF has refused to honour its promises including the promise of more money in people’s pockets. The cost of living has gone up with basic needs such as mealie meal rising to levels beyond what many people can afford. This scenario has convinced the people that the PF got into government through the window and not through the door because they lied to get the votes,” Fr Bwalya said.
He said the opposition political parties in the alliance will continue to operate as independent political parties adding that if Zambians who had called for a united opposition shall demand that the political parties involved merge to form a bigger political entity, the leaders of the alliance would consider the idea. Fr Bwalya said the alliance was a huge task that would require sacrifice, selflessness and a mature spirit of give and take.
Fr said the alliance was consulting on the formation of the committee of elders that would serve as an advisory council and that the a technical committee would also be formed that would include members of the participating political parties as well as non partisan experts.