ECZ needs people of integrity – Mucheleka
By Mwape Mbwelela
PATRICK Muchelwka says the Electoral Commission of Zambia needs people of integrity to handle elections fairly.
Commenting on the outcome of the Gambia, Mucheleka said ECZ chairperson justice Esau Chulu and director Priscilla Isaac should learn from the happenings in Gambia after having failed the Zambian people lamentably.
The former Lubansenshi independent member of parliament said elections in Gambia were under a hostile environment but their strong electoral laws helped them usher in a new President.
He said the Electoral Commission of Zambia had lost the confidence of sane Zambians as well as the international community.
“Esau Chulu and Priscilla Isaacs stole the 2016 election for Lungu. When the time is ripe, the two will fail to steal another election because Zambians have seen the sufferings following the disputed election. ECZ must learn lessons on what is happening in other countries like Gambia. All we need is men and women of integrity, those beyond reproach,” Mucheleka said.
“What we have here are corrupt elements turned into electoral officers or Commissioners. At the moment, ECZ is an institution that is highly discredited and does not command any respect from anyone at all. We need serious reforms within the Electoral Commission, not just ECZ as an entity but serious reforms that should be wide-ranging. We need to give some integrity to that institution.”
He said Zambians would have difficulties agreeing to go to the next elections without reforms at ECZ.
“At the moment, integrity is lacking in the people running ECZ. No one will ever agree to go to an election superintended by Esau Chulu and Priscilla Isaacs again, it’s not possible. If they have any iota of self-respect, this is the time for them to leave. They should simply say we did our part and stole the election for Lungu and we are walking away, let them walk away in shame. No one will agree to see an election superintended by those discredited commissioners who actually facilitated the rigging of the election for PF,” Mucheleka said.
He said Zambians must brace themselves for hard times for allowing President Lungu and the PF to rig the 2016 election.
Mucheleka said the people PF was claiming to have voted them into office were suffering in all spheres of their lives.
He said as a result of voting for power hungry politicians, the country was now battered beyond repair and the voters were the most hit.
“You go to the streets of Lusaka now! The same people PF claimed to have voted for them are crying. Go to the farmers in Eastern Province, they are crying because of late seed and input delivery; the drivers now will be on the street because of the new night ban on movements of PSVs. The list is endless; the economy has grounded to a halt. In whose interest is Lungu governing with all these disasters following the disputed elections?” asked Mucheleka.