ECZ Cant Be Trusted, Disband it – Milupi.
CHARLES Milupi says Zambians cannot trust the Electoral Commission of Zambia and it must therefore be disbanded.
The ECZ on Tuesday issued a statement to correct the announced results for the Mushindamo district chairperson election held last Thursday where PF candidate Peter Kapamba, the loser, was declared winner instead of UPND’s Lackson Mulumbi.
And now, the High Court has nullified two seats held by ministers who were declared validly elected by the ECZ despite clear evidence of electoral malpractice.
Milupi said in an interview yesterday that the cancellation of declared election results by the ECZ was a clear indication that Zambia could no longer rely on the electoral body in its current form.
He said Zambians would have difficulties trusting the ECZ if no reforms are made.
“The fact that now we are seeing elections where the ECZ declared someone a winner and then later cancel it is a clear indication that this nation can no longer rely on the Commission in its current form, it needs to be disbanded. Look at how many petitions are there! Look at how many are being reversed, including those of ministers! They (ECZ) are the ones who were supposed to say ‘no, the law says you cannot campaign using public resources’ because they have the law. That is why they are headed by a judge. Now they see themselves as agents to ensure that certain people continue to be in power,” Milupi said.
“The result is that the country ends up with a leadership and policies that they did not want but what ECZ and their masters want. That is why we have a failing Zambia, we have non-existent policies leading to greater poverty, greater suffering of the people and anything you can think of. It is because of the failure of ECZ to give the people what they want. Because we had such kind of manipulation, deliberate errors such as the results in Lundazi, where they themselves had to reverse and remove 8,000 votes from President Lungu, the end result is those who participated in the elections cannot have confidence that the results declared are true results. If people don’t have the confidence in the results that have been declared, they cannot therefore, have confidence in the President.”
He said the UPND would not have petitioned the presidential results if the ECZ had conducted elections in a fair manner.
And Milupi said it was the UPND’s constitutional right not to recognise Edgar Lungu as Republican President.
“It is their constitutional right. Like in America, Donald Trump won squarely through the Electoral College vote but there are people who are saying ‘he is not my president’. We are not seeing them getting arrested. I don’t know what is wrong with this country. This syndrome of saying ‘I am the President and everyone should bow to me’ is what has put this country into problems. We are slowly becoming like Zimbabwe because of dictatorship. That is where this leadership is taking this country,” Milupi said.
He appealed to President Lungu to allow democracy to prevail so that the will of the people was seen to be done.
Milupi said the UPND had the right to dispute the election results because of the way the ECZ conducted the August 11 general elections.
“The major players, the ones who should have been the first ones to say ‘congratulations’ are still disputing the results. The reasons given, we are very clear, include lack of G12 forms. That was not an oversight but deliberate to make sure that the election results were manipulated. The ECZ are part of the executive wing even though we expect them to be independent. But they are supposed to be fair,” said Milupi.“When everybody realised the Commission had behaved in a very disgraceful manner, they sought recourse to the other arm of government, the judicature again through the Constitutional Court. The Constitutional Court also behaved in a disgraceful manner such that up to now, what was taken to them has not been properly adjudicated.”