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Police assures fair POA application

KANGANJA

LINDA NYONDO & ALVIN CHIINGA, Lusaka
INSPECTOR General of Police Kakoma Kanganja has assured all political parties that the Zambia Police Service will ensure that the Public Order Act is applied fairly and equally.
Mr Kanganja said in a statement issued in Lusaka yesterday that he met United Party for National Development (UPND) president Hakainde Hichilema and senior party members of the opposition party to discuss their concerns over the application of the Act.
He said the UPND should comply with the provision of the law and observe peace and order.
“I have taken note of concerns raised by the UPND leadership and I thanked them for promoting dialogue and I encouraged them to feel free to engage the police command each time they have concerns,” he said.
Mr Kanganja said the UPND will not be stopped from exercising its freedoms as long as the opposition party complies with the provisions of the law.
And police have advised political parties to abide by the law and desist from premature election campaigns outside the dates announced by the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) ahead of the August 11 tripartite elections.
Police spokesperson Charity Munganga-Chanda said in an interview yesterday that politicians who will start premature campaigns before the set dates will face the wrath of the law.
“I am urging politicians to ensure that they abide by the Public Order Act and desist from starting campaigning ahead of the August 11th general elections,” Ms Munganga-Chanda said.
She said the election campaign period has been announced, adding that those who want to hold meetings should ensure that they notify the police as required by law.
ECZ chairperson Esau Chulu announced on Thursday last week that the presidential nominations will be held from June 28 to July 2, this year, and has advised all candidates to ensure that their school qualifications are properly certified by the Examinations Council of Zambia.
Justice Chulu said supporters for presidential candidates from the provinces will not be required to travel to Lusaka for verification but that this will be done at the provincial centres where these supporters will be screened.
Justice Chulu said the campaign period for the general elections will run from May 16 to August 10, this year, and that Parliament is expected to be dissolved around May.
He said the new voters’ roll will be inspected and that certification of the voters’ register will take place on July 31, this year.



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