Politicians splitting foreign diplomats


POLITICAL parties are dividing the foreign diplomats with their solidarity marches as some are seen to be for the ruling party while others are for the opposition, says Zambia Volunteers Network (ZVN) president Gerald Chiluba.

He said in an interview yesterday that the purported solidarity marches by both the PF and UPND have put the diplomats in an awkward position.

“Diplomats have been put in a really awkward position such that some risk to being recalled by their governments because of their perceived allegiances. We therefore, oppose any solidarity march past as suggested by some political parties,” Mr Chiluba said.

He has since appealed to the police to ignore notices from political parties as solidarity marches could be a source of mayhem.

Mr Chiluba said as much as diplomats could freely mingle with political players in the country there was need that they avoid issuing political statements as this had the potential to bring about strife considering that this is an election year.

“We strongly feel that diplomats are professionals who understand that excessive participation in other country’s political affairs could cause strife,” he said.

Mr Chiluba said that diplomatic missions should be handled diplomatically instead of being drawn into politics.

He said the diplomats have been put in an awkward position because some were perceived to be for the government while others for the opposition which must not be the case.

Mr Chiluba has since condemned the suggested solidarity march by the UPND and the one conducted by the PF.

About two weeks ago, UPND president Hakainde Hichilema hosted 15 diplomats for lunch at his residence leaving out others.

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