Lusaka (15-05-18) – National Democratic Stakeholders Summit (NDSS) has commenced in Lusaka with a call on delegates to show not commitment to addressing contentious issues but also sincerity in their deliberation.
Addressing delegates at Mulungushi International Conference on Tuesday morning Zambia Centre for Interparty Dialogue (ZCID) board chairman told delegates that a the summit is a wider platform for stakeholders not only to consult but also reach a consensus on problematic issues known to have caused tension in the country.
He said the issues that will be discussed during the summit will greatly contribute towards resolving contentious issues.
According to Mulonga, the ZCID has the largest constituency with diverse political parties that are key to the dialogue and proposed reform processes.
He said it is important to proceed with the dialogue because the discussion will significantly contribute in peace building and on how to move forward as the nation.
Mulonga clarified that brokering the relationship around reconciliation will include other eminent person whose platform it will provide.
He further indicated that the ZCID will continue to facilitate and manage the summits and ensure that all political players embrace the need for oneness, national unity and build the most cherished peace the country deserve.
He said is time began to address the one Zambia one nation moto that knows no tribalism and seclusion.
“One of the central message from all the consultation and should be high on the agenda is reconciliation and harmony which is key to the ingredients to the process of reconciliation.”
He added that it is for this reason that ZCID still make an earnest call for all leaders to see the need for dialogue and on the common cause.
He expressed the need to deal with the perceived incidents of corruption and respect for the governance structures and institutions, including the respect for independence of the judiciary and the separation of power saying this would inspire hope and confidence and reduce mistrust in the country.
Meanwhile Mulonga has asked the Ministry of justice to release the draft copy of the refined constitution to enable the delegates appreciate the changes that have been made.
Mulonga indicated that as the delegates deliberate on the constitution, there is noted for them to have a reference to the copy of the constitution the government has already worked on saying this will stop suspicion and mistrust being built among stakeholders.
And speaking earlier, Justice Minister of justice Given Lubinda commended the ZCID for coming up with the NDSS saying this is a great step towards achieving the the objective of peace.
He said for a long time the ZCID has been trying to work towards building peace among political parties.
He said the ZCID should continue to work towards uniting political parties.
“This work you have embarked on is a noble cause and a blessings from government.”
He suggested that the outcome of the summit will benefit even the generations yet to come.
He further called for respect for the party that lead the ZCID saying accept the outcome of the summit.
He for a long time the ZCID has been providing the government with early warning signs of the possible rise to conflict.
“Because of this action, the often averted the possible conflict.”
He he further urged the ZCID to continue talking to each other all the time.
He said the art of listening is the shortest way to resolving the conflicts.
Further Lubinda pledged government commitment to adherent to the rule of law and it’s promotion.
He said a vibrant rule of law is recipe for peace which is why the government wants the constitution refined to enable all the people to appreciate it’s benefit.
He also pledge that the government will not infringe the right of political parties to grow.
“As a government we are mindful of the issues including constitution and institutions reforms, public order act, electoral reforms, judiciary and economic. That is why am urging the the delegates to be objective in their deliberation.”
He furthermore thanks the Commonwealth for sending prof Ibrahim Gambari who came up with the issues that the people of Zambia want to dialogue on. “Now that we know what need to be discussed it is up to us local people to find their own solutions on the same matters.”
He promised to lease the draft constitution at an optune time. “The constitution should been released a long time ago but we failed to do so after the ZCID requested to put the action on hold.”
He added that for now deliberate on it and after the report, draft constitution be released after the NDSS gathering.
He directed the NDSS to advise the government on how the constitution should be dealt with.
The constitution will be agreed upon by the people and the government will release the constitution but this will depend on how the people will want it done.