Opposition complain over POA application

By nation Reporter

OPPOSITION political parties have accused President Edgar Lungu of having failed to constitute a technical committee with the mandate of looking into the inadequacies of the Public Order Act (POA) and its fair and balanced application to all political parties.

At a second Indaba for political parties held at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross on Friday, political parties said it was regrettable that there had been a rise in political violence despite the political parties having agreed and signed the resolution of the first Indaba.

The Christian Churches Monitoring Groups (CCMG) through the three Church mother bodies, the Council of Churches in Zambia (CCZ), the Evangelical Fellowship of Zambia (EFZ) and the Zambia Episcopal Conference (ZEC) organised a second political parties Indaba to review whether political parties were adhering to the resolutions of the first Indaba.

The second Indaba was, however, only attended by six political parties which included the FDD, the People’s Alliance for Change (PAC), UNIP, Green Party, UPND and the United Progressive Party (UPP) while the ruling Patriotic Front (PF) absconded.

CCMG spokesperson Fr Cleophas Lungu said in a statement yesterday that the opposition political parties were concerned with the continued violation of their rights and the lack of police action on reported cases of politically motivated violence.

He said it was the view of the opposition political parties that there was a general popularisation of violent parties as opposed to rewarding non-violent political parties and that political violence was mainly being perpetrated by the ruling PF and the UPND.

“Political parties further agreed that party leaders should refrain from the use of hate speech and offensive language especially against each other to avoid political violence and recommended that the Church continues its mediation efforts,” fr Lungu said.

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