Voting in Feira underway

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Voting in the Feira constituency by-election in Luangwa district of Lusaka province is underway although it started on a slow note.

In most polling stations, voting started slightly after 06:00 hours.

At Luangwa primary school, the polling station was declared open by the presiding officer Doreen Zila at exactly 06:00 hours and the first voter Austin Botha cast his vote three minutes after.

At the time of opening the polling station, only 13 people were in a queue in the first stream while eight others were in the second stream.

A similar situation characterized polling stations in Mandombe ward where queues of people were found waiting to cast their votes.

But at Kakoro primary school in Phwazi ward, where voters are also electing a ward councilor besides the Member of Parliament, the situation was better as 26 had already cast their votes by 06:50 while at Child Fund Community School, 14 people had cast their votes by 06:40 hours despite the polling station opening two minutes late.

Meanwhile, fish business at the harbours in Luangwa has slowed down today because fishermen, women and traders have all gone to cast their votes.

A check by ZANIS at the two harbours found few Zambian fishermen and traders conducting their businesses while others traders were alleged to have come from the neighbouring Zimbabwe and Mozambique.

When asked whether they had already cast their votes or not, one of the traders, who sought anonymity, explained that she and other colleagues were ineligible voters in Zambia but stated that the rest of her colleagues had gone to cast their votes in their respective polling district.

At the central business area where all political activities mainly took place during campaigns, the situation is calm and business is going on smoothly.

Feira constituency has a population of 25,296 out of which 11,264 people are registered voters. The constituency has 31 polling stations.

The Feira seat fell vacant when Patrick Ngoma of the Movement for Multiparty Democracy (MMD) ditched the former ruling party to join the ruling Patriotic Front (PF). Mr. Ngoma is recontesting the seat on the PF ticket.

The seat is also being contested by United Independence Party (UNIP) candidate Charles Kanyama, United Party for National Development (UPND) candidate Eularia Zulu, MMD candidate Elias Phiri and NAREP’s Samuel Sikaonga.