THE ongoing preliminary election for the adoption process ahead of the August 11 elections has brought divisions in some areas in Western province where some people are turning against each other and prefer to back their own tribesmen.
Aspiring Kaoma council chairperson Kennedy Mubanga observed that instead of the opposition aiming at ousting the Patriotic Front, it was the Mbunda aspirants against their Lozi counterparts.
Mr Mubanga alleged that there was deep-rooted “mistrust” leading to the Lozi camp to plant their own candidates in almost all the 19 parliamentary constituencies and the 16 districts for council chairpersons for self-preservation.
He said the situation had placed political parties in an awkward position in as far as considering individuals for adoption on their respective political party tickets.
Mr Mubanga claimed that the failed attempt by some Lozis to secede from the rest of Zambia had evolved into a charged political atmosphere in the province in which the pro-secession ethnic groups were seeking to contest political power in the August 2016 election against the anti-secession ethnic group.
“I have just returned from Western Province where I observed that the failed attempt by the Lozis to secede from the rest of Zambia has instead evolved into a charged political atmosphere in the province, and this is being witnessed in the primary elections being conducted in the area where each group is clearly backing their own people,” he said.
Mr Mubanga said the situation was most likely to become worse in the campaign period in the run-up to the August 11, 2016 general election if not properly handled.
He said it was for that reason Mbundas had reiterated their call to the Government to settle the dispute over the Barotseland Agreement of 1964 through a sector referendum in the affected territorial jurisdiction for the sake of peace and stability.
Mr Mubanga claimed that statistics showed that the Mbundas were the single largest ethnic group accounting for about 50 percent of the population size of Western Province with the remainder being shared among the Lozis, Nkoyas and other ethnic groups.
Mr Mubanga is vying for Kaoma council chairperson under the Patriotic Front ticket.