The Eminent Persons, Senior Citizens and Freedom Fighters have expressed concern over the current political situation which is prevailing between the ruling Patriotic Front (PF) and the opposition United Party for National Development.
“We, the Eminent Persons, Senior Citizens and Freedom Fighter have noted with great concern the political divisions, discrimination based on regions, tribal and political associations not only in the political arena but also at work places to an extent where people have been fired in national interest,” they said.
The Freedom Fighters also said being silent on such issues was causing an increase in the intolerance and disrespect in society.
“The increasing intolerance and disrespect in our society and the declining and shrinking democratic, political, civic and media spaces in our country and hereby wish to express our resolve to speak out whenever such vices emerge,”
“We have realized that our continued silence on such matters has actually encouraged these democratic ills, we are concerned on the breakdown of the rule of law and absence of separation of powers in the state organs as this was visibly seen by the continued display of impunity by certain state institutions to disobey court orders”, they said.
“We also wish to express concern over the breakdown of the rule of law, the absence of separation of powers among the three arms of the state and constitutionalism in the country. This visibly observed by the continued exhibition by some state institutions to disobey court orders as was recently the case in the Hakainde Hichilema and four others,” the freedom fighters said.
The Freedom Fighters also noted that the increasing culture of fear and silence among citizens as potential threat to democracy.
“The increasing culture of fear and silence emerging among citizens on many national issues is potentially threatening the country’s democracy, erodes the rule of law and grossly undermines good governance as a result of intimidation and suppression,” they said.
They further said the judgment by the magistrates court in the case of using offensive language involving UPND Leader Hakainde Hichilema case exposed the incompetence and unprofessional conduct of some officers in the Zambian judicial system.
“We have noted that the state capture of the judiciary has led to the passing of questionable court judgments as recently observed,” the Freedom fighters said.