By Macdonald Chipenzi
A few days ago reports of distribution of mealie-meal in Chilubi Island ahead of the by-election emerged. Without shame the Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit (DMMU) admitted doing that and further vowing never to stop doing it with or without a by-election.
The next day, openly using Political power publicly flagged off the distribution of relief food in a district holding the by-election. Unsurprisingly, those supposed to fight electoral corruption, blackmail, bribery and general malpractices remained mute as if they did not exist and the conduct of DMMU seems to be in good electoral test.
The referee of this by-election election also looked elsewhere to pretend never to have witnessed the illegal activities so that an excuse of those aggrieved not writing formally to the referee. In fact their CEO even came out to ask the opposition to lodge a complaint if they were not happy when they can clearly see what is going on in bread daylight.
Do we expect free and fair election in CHILUBI regardless of who wins, No.
CHILUBI Island Parliamentary by-election is a litmus of the ugliness of what is to be expected in the 2021 General Elections. It has been held to make it pass and meet the Constitutional fixture and not to ensure, promote and produce a free and fair election.
The Law in 2021 will just be a piece of paper to be considered after elections as it will not be respected during the elections by both the managers of the elections and the enforcers of the law before, during and after the elections.
It is the saddest moment in Zambia”s electoral history. CHILUBI ISLAND PARLIAMENTARY by-election is testament of a failed legal regime enforcement and a total institutional collapse.