Macdonald Chipenzi

By McDonald Chipenzi


Reading through the intention of the sponsors of Bill 10 and Bill 10 itself, it is crystal clear that the idea is to clamp down the rights of political parties to disseminate their political opinions, views and information.

For instance, the current Constitution under Article 60(1)(a) guarantees political parties “to disseminate information on social and economic programmes of a national character and of its political ideology”.

However, Bill 10 has proposed to repeal this clause under Amendment 12 of the Bill which will further make it difficult for political parties to canvass or campaign for politcal power in the country.

So this drama of curtailing other political parties from featuring on radio/TV stations using DCs, state institutions like IBA and cadres and intimidating radio/TV stations is a well orchestrated scheme embedded in Bill 10.

Once Bill 10 is passed, no political party will have that right, except the ruling party and its surrogate parties, to disseminate their political opiniondls, views and information without state or ruling party interference.

If you think am joking, compare the provisions in the current Constitution and those proposals in Bill 10 under Amendment 12 which aim at repealing the entire current Article 60 (1) on the rights of a political party.

If fact, Bill 10 also removes/repeals the clause under Art. 60 clause (1)(b) that awards political parties the right “to sponsor candidates for election or nomination to a state office in respect of which elections are required to be held”.

This same applies to clause 1(c) on “conducting of primary elections for the selection of candidates” by political parties which is also poised for repeal if Bill 10 is to be passed into law.

Therefore, political parties are to be gagged even more should bill 10 be entertained to pass the 2/3 majority vote in the National Assembly and becomes law.

Unless the country aims at killing multiparty democracy which is already under threat by the shrinking political space, Bill 10 remains an obnoxious Bill to the existence and growth of democracy in Zambia.

Political parties with representation and independents in the National Assembly, please unite and save the country’s multiparty democracy from death by rejecting Bill 10.

I submit


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