By Wallen Simwaka in New York
PRESIDENT Edgar Lungu was duly elected and should be recognised by all as the legitimate President of the republic of Zambia, the United States of America (USA) Government has declared.
The US Government has urged the opposition UPND to recognise and accept President Lungu as the legitimate Head of State and avoid causing confusion by rejecting the will of the citizens.
Linda Thomas Greenfield, the US Assistant Secretary of State said her government recognised President Lungu as having been duly elected and Zambia’s legitimate Head of State and it was, therefore, important for those who had lost the August general elections to concede defeat.
Speaking when she paid a courtesy call on President Lungu at Walford Hotel on Saturday, Ms Thomas Greenfield said the US government was saddened by the post-elections violence and appealed to President Lungu to ensure that the perpetrators accounted for their actions.
She said the US government was impressed with the existence of strong democratic institutions in Zambia which had seen a peaceful transition, a feat that was absent in other African countries.
Ms Thomas Greenfield encouraged President Lungu to promote dialogue for the continued peace and political stability in Zambia.
She said the US government was happy with the manner President Lungu had presided over the tensed political environment following a petition by the UPND to the Constitutional Court demanding the nullification of the re-election of the Head of State.
“Your Excellency, the US Government recognises that you were duly elected and that you are the legitimate President of Zambia. You have been inaugurated and those who got 47 percent of the vote (UPND) should accept and recognise you as President for all. There were flaws in the electoral process but the US still has accepted the outcome of the general elections because it reflects the will of the people. The US is happy with the strength of the institutions of governance and the court process is over and Zambia must now move on under your stewardship,” Ms Thomas Greenfield said.
She also appealed to President Lungu to ensure that perpetrators of violence were held accountable and that her government did not condone acts of violence against citizens.
Ms Thomas Greenfield stated that it was the desire of the US Government to see that violence did not escalate in Zambia because the country had remained a good example of democracy in Africa.