By Chris Zumani Zimba
In an official press statement this morning, the United Party for National Development (UPND) led Opposition Alliance of 13 Political Parties has withdrawn from the Zambia Center for Inter party Dialogue (ZCID) with regard to the On-Going National Dialogue and Reconciliation Process and consequently declared themselves in advance as unconditional winners of Zambia’s general and presidential elections of 2021.
The decision to pull out of the ZCID with regards the Dialogue process follows the decision by the ruling Patriotic Front (PF) and its Affiliated Political Parties to walk out from the Pamodzi Hotel Consultative Meeting of Tuesday, 29th January 2019.
Alliance Chairperson Media and Finance Committees, Sean Tembo said the Alliance is disappointed with the Conduct of the PF and its Affiliated Political Parties, together with ZCID, to Walk Out of the Tuesday Meeting which was called to try to resolve the Impasse Regarding the Draft Memorandum of Understanding on the dialogue process.
Mr. Tembo said the Alliance’s desire to see the National Dialogue process succeed is premised on their desire to reduce tension, conflict and chaos before, during and After the 2021 General Elections which the Opposition Alliance is absolutely certain that they will win. “It must be made clear that with or without the National Dialogue and Reconciliation process succeeding, the Opposition Alliance will Win the 2021 General Elections with a landslide”, Mr Tembo stressed.
Mr. Tembo said the Alliance does not see the possible success of the national dialogue and reconciliation process as a prerequisite to their winning the 2021 general elections, but rather as merely complimentary. He said a successful national dialogue and reconciliation process would ensure a peaceful transition of power in 2021, whereas a failed national dialogue and reconciliation process will bring about a chaotic transition of power in 2021. “Whatever the case, we in the opposition alliance are confident beyond any shadows of doubt, that there will be a transition of power in 2021. The only question is what type? Chaotic or peaceful? And that is where the on-going national dialogue and reconciliation process comes in”, he added.
This is a crucial episode for the national dialogue process as well as Zambian politics. But whether the Opposition Alliance will win the 2021 National Vote or not, is another story for another day. But in a democracy, we know that political leaders are not self-imposed but elected by the people-citizens in free, fair and peaceful elections. Unfortunately, by implication and direct interpretation, Tembo made premature ruling and unfounded declaration that HH will and must be the guaranteed winner of the 2021 elections at presidential level. This is what makes their pre-election proclamation for 2021 both politically wrong, democratically an assault to national stability and peace as well as constitutionally illegal and criminous.
Chris Zumani Zimba is a prolific Political Scientist, Analyst, Author, Blogger, PhD Scholar, Researcher and Consultant. Besides being the CEO and Managing Consultant at Chrizzima Democracy University (CDU) in Zambia, he analyses African politics weekly on Voice of the Cape Radio, South Africa every Wednesday at 16:20hours CAT. So far, he has authored more than 10 political and academic books as well as published over 100 well researched articles. Sometimes, he lectures Political Science-Part Time with University of Zambia (UNZA) and University of Lusaka (UNILUS) outside his usual commitments.