Opposition alliance warns of bloody chaos in 2021 if dialogue is avoided.
By Staff Reporter
The opposition alliance has warned that the 2021 elections will be bloody and marred with violence if the PF continue playing a “cat and mouse game’ over the dialogue process as there will be a lot of simmering unresolved issues.
Speaking when he appeared on Radio Pheonix’s Let the People Talk on Tuesday Alliance spokesperson Sean Tembo said President Edgar Lungu bear the responsibility and know that “blood will be on his hands”.
He said the objectives of the national dialogue needed to be attained if there are to be free and fair elections in 2021 “we need to address the level playing field, the Public Order Act, abuse of media, legalising of election rigging and general electoral reforms”.
Tembo accused the PF of frustrating the dialogue process at every level because they don’t want to operate under a level playing field in fear that they may compromise some of the political power and “tools” which they are currently holding.
“The PF initially frustrated the Commonwealth dialogue process which was agreed upon when HH was released from prison and proposed that the process should be led by the church. However, they then started frustrating the church mother bodies. They started sending their surrogate parties to hold press briefings and insult the church mother bodies. Now, they are advocating that we can’t have dialogue under the church but under ZCID because they know they can easily control the organisation to frustrate the process until 2021,” he said.
He said the PF was being hypocritical because they were the ones who proposed the 18th January 2019 (when the launch was held) from the initial planned date of 5th January 2019.
“How can you claim you were not invited to a meeting on a day that you yourselves proposed?” he asked. “They actually counter proposed. We had to shift from the 5th to the 18th to accommodate them. They are always advancing a very shallow argument at every twist and turn. They know that if there is a level playing field then HH can wake up tomorrow and go to Kamanga or Kaunda square, he will go there and meet the people freely and people will swarm him and get his message” he said.
Tembo said the PF is afraid of operating normally without the abuse of the Public Order Act citing that “the PF is a finished political party. The only thing that is keeping the PF afloat is the power for the President to issue favours through tenders”.
And also speaking on Hot FM’s Frank on Hot programme during the same time, alliance member Elias Chipimo said the president has no choice but to find a way of building unity.
“We started with this process where he met with president Hichilema, but what has come out of it? All we are hearing are stories around ZCID, the dialogue process, things are not working out, its as though we don’t have a head of state who is really interested in bridging these divisions within our nation. That’s one of his roles and he must play it,” he said.
Chipimo said the 10 member alliance was vital in pushing the PF to dialogue because alliances are a reality of Zambia’s current political land scape, stressing that “this is a good thing because nobody should go in there governing alone”.
“The beauty of the alliance we are trying to build is that it is diverse. It is trying to bring people from all corners of the country together and say ‘no matter what our differences, we can agree on some fundamental things” pointing out that “it is important that we do it now. The PF would not have won the last election if they did not go into an alliance with the MMD,” he said.