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Zambia Opposition Patriotic Front Holds A News Conference To Reflect On Election Defeat

In Zambia, opposition presidential candidate Michael Sata of the patriotic front party has held a press conference to challenge the results of just ended elections after his defeat by incumbent president Levy Mwanawasa. Sata called the electoral commission incompetent in the way it organized the polls. Yesterday’s comments come after local and international observers declared last Thursday’s general tripartite elections free and fair. Mwanawasa has since been inaugurated and has begun his second term in office

Guy Scott is the general secretary of the opposition Patriotic Front party. He spoke with VOA English to Africa reporter Peter Clottey about the news conference.

“ There was a lot covered. There were many subjects including, thanks to all those who helped us, the whole question of rigging. The whole question of whether we accept the legitimacy of the elections, which we don’t. I mean we think that there [has] been even no fraudulent than previous elections. But we also announced that, we are in charge now of the major cities and town councils in Zambia, including Lusaka, the capital. And that we will run these institutions as autonomous bodies and that we will start to deliver through these councils,” he said.

Scot disagrees with international observers who declared the just ended elections free and fair.

“I’ve always told international observers in Zambia, for many years now. The truth comes out days after the elections. It doesn’t come out on the Election Day or the day after. When people have got their money and drunk their money and recovered from their hangover, that is when they are prepared to tell you what really happened. And that to come out with those statements saying that the elections were free and fair, within hours of the elections taking place is very naïve. So I think we are very disappointed in these international observers, “ he noted.

Scot said the news conference was significant to highlight the strong showing of the party and what it is going to do with its gains.

“…This election is been largely about local government, it’s been about delivery of road maintenance; it’s been about delivering of education, it’s been about bread and butter issues. And we are now in charge of the councils that actually serve the people of Zambia. And I think that is significant when we said we are going to deliver on our promises…”

Scott sends a message for president Mwanawasa and his ruling MMD party.

“The message to Levy Mwanawasa is look, you lost these elections actually, and that the people who knew you best voted most against you. It’s only the people, if you like, in the villages and the Bundorgs and even they I’m not sure had their voice heard. And yeah we are still after you, we are still after your job, we are still after your government. We don’t believe you have done a good job in the last five years. Nobody believes in you and we are still after you,” Scott said.

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