African customary rights and Christian religious decorum should not be sacrificed for political expediency, UPND strategists have been warned.
Canon Everest Chama of the Redeemers Evangelical Church said it was sacrilegious to coerce people in mourning to participate in active politics in order to win political advantage.
“There is no blessing in disregarding traditional norms and it is our hope that the UPND is not canvassing late president Michael Sata’s spouse Dr. Kaseba to participate in active politics because this will be total disrespect to tradition,” he said.
Canon Chama was reacting to reports published by News24 that the UPND had adopted former first lady Dr. Christine Kaseba as running mate to UPND president Hakainde Hichilema.
“President Sata died as the PF president after handing over the reins of power to Edgar Lungu. He entrusted the whole country to Edgar Lungu because he had confidence in him and not all the other people who are now claiming to champion his cause such as former Vice President Guy Scott who was never made acting president at any time,” he said.
He added that the use of religious symbols in political campaigns was equally an affront to Christianity which considered such documents as the Bible sacred and therefore, not to be used to promote political causes.
“We must have respect for culture and Christian tradition which hold the Zambian people in peace and harmony. If these are destroyed by careless abuse, the result will be too drastic for this Christian nation because Zambians will have nowhere to run to,” Cannon Chama said.
He appealed to the UPND strategists to take the cue from other political parties including the MMD which did not deliberately and intentionally use such symbols in their campaign because such a practice was offensive.