—A Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) in Eastern Province has charged that the scooping of all Local government by-elections held yesterday in Petauke and Lundazi by the ruling Patriotic Front (PF) is because people appreciate good policies that government is implementing.
Speaking in an interview with ZANIS today Centre for Human Rights and Development Executive Officer, Mwima Mtine, said the PF has gained popularity among the electorates because of its intensified fight against corruption.
Mr Mtine observed that even though there was voter apathy in both districts, the elections were free and fair.
He has, however, appealed to government to ensure that all the programmes are implemented for the benefit of the poor people who were the majority amongst the electorates.
He said the PF should not behave like the former ruling party – the MMD – which lost popularity because it ignored the interest of the masses after gaining ground.
Meanwhile, Contemporary Leadership Foundation (CLF) Executive Director, Gilbert Chisanga, advised Zambians to take advantage of the draft constitution and support articles that would bar unnecessary by elections.
Mr Chisanga cited the crossing from one party to another as one that should be discouraged in the new constitution, adding that unless in an event where an incumbent dies.
He demised the notion that development can only be brought about if one belonged to a ruling party, noting that money for development comes from the national treasury and not a political party.
He noted that huge sums of money were spent on by elections at the expense of enhancing national development in social sectors.
Mr. Chisanga, who is also former Commonwealth Youth Representative for
Zambia, said as a result of the by elections, the electorates were deprived of their rights to basic and social needs.
He has also called on people to support the clause in the draft constitution that supports councillors to be getting gratuity as this is going to help in reducing corruption.
Efforts to get a comment from the MMD proved futile as the Provincial Chairperson, Alexander Miti, had his phone switched off.
The PF party yesterday scooped all the local government by elections in Petauke and Lundazi that were previously held by the MMD.