By Nation Reporter
PATRIOTIC Front (PF) and United Party for National Development (UPND) youths on the Copperbelt have pledged to ensure that the province remains peaceful during the campaigns for this year’s election.
In a joint statement on Tuesday, the youth leadership from the two parties said they wanted issue-based campaigns to take place before this year’s election and said they would deal with any of their members found perpetrating violence.
Copperbelt PF youth chairperson Nathan Chanda said there was need for all political parties to exercise tolerance towards one another and not to engage in physical confrontation each time they felt aggrieved.
Mr. Chanda said the youths on the Copperbelt were ready to show that political parties could co-exist despite their differences in party ideologies because they appreciated and accepted divergent views on the political arena.
“We need to respect divergent views without resorting to physical confrontation and we need to demand and have issue-based campaigns and not campaigns of character assassination and name-calling even when the worst gets to the worst; we should not resort to violence because as youths, we are the torch bearers and ambassadors of peace and we should make sure we co-exist.
“Zambia is bigger than all of us as individuals and if our forefathers did not fight for this peace we are enjoying today, we would not have been where we are today. We want to amputate this cancer of violence which is spreading like bush fire in our country and Copperbelt being the hub of Zambian politic wants to take the lead,” he said
And UPND provincial youth chairperson Kelly Jibinga challenged the youths in the province and the country at large to be responsible and appreciate and treasure the efforts that various political leaders put into in attaining the multiparty democracy that Zambia was enjoying.
Mr. Jibinga said youths must not be at the centre of watering down and demeaning efforts that past and present political leaders had invested in attaining multi-party democracy by engaging themselves in political violence, adding that the UPND would continue to preach tolerance of divergent political views.
“Zambia has in the recent past witnessed unprecedented levels of political violence and we want to make a passionate appeal to our various political party presidents to be sincere to their commitment to bring violence to an end. We must all live in harmony with one another,” Mr. Jibinga said.