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Opinion: Political Violence Getting Out Of Hands

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There is really no need for political parties to pay lip service to the question of political party violence.

I think everyone now is getting sick and tired of the pretence around the subject and knows that there has to be real action.

There has really been no need to wait for loss of lives for anyone to take this matter seriously. For some time now everyone has sung about it with the clergy through the initiative of the Roman Catholic Bishops evening bringing politicians to the table to renounce violence but since that well intentioned caucus it has been business as usual with rival cadres largely from the ruling Patriotic Front and the opposition United Party for National Development maiming each other.

No life is worth losing especially for the kind of politics that we practice that consigns lowly placed cadres only to debasing conditions once the elections are over. It should be noted that none of the political party leaders that set cadres against each other live to suffer the consequences of the violence that springs from their instigation.

In any case what is so special about this election that all business should come to a standstill when elections should merely be a competition to serve? Why should be so willing to walk the violent and bloody path in seeking to rule the very peaceful people of the Republic of Zambia?

Even leaders whose greatest currency for their politics is violence should tone down their language and hold back arsenals for the sake of peace. Why should people be willing to build militia for the sake of winning an election?

So to the political parties bloodying each other our plea is that they should cease fire for this is just an election like any other and it will be business as usual unless of course we continue the violent path. One has to feel for the empty sentiments coming from the Electoral Commission of Zambia that has half heartedly stated that they will ban candidates and political parties engaging in violence from taking part in elections.

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