SPECIAL ADDRESS TO THE NATION

SPECIAL ADDRESS TO THE NATION BY HIS EXCELLENCY MR. EDGAR CHAGWA LUNGU PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF ZAMBIA, AND COMMANDER-IN-CHIEF OF THE ARMED FORCES ON THE EVE OF THE 11TH AUGUST, 2016 GENERAL ELECTIONS.

WE HAVE COME TO THE END OF AN EXCITING AND LARGELY PEACEFUL CAMPAIGN FOR TOMORROW’S GENERAL ELECTION AND NATIONAL REFERENDUM. LET ME THEREFORE THANK ALL OF YOU FOR THE LARGELY ORDERLY AND PEACEFUL MANNER YOU CONDUCTED YOURSELVES DURING THE CAMPAIGN PERIOD. REGRETTABLY, THERE WERE SOME ISOLATED INCIDENTS OF VIOLENCE. LET US ALL LEARN LESSONS FROM THESE EXPERIENCES AND COMMIT TO GREATER PEACE AND UNITY OF THIS COUNTRY WE ALL CHERISH. THAT IS WHO WE ARE AS ZAMBIANS–PEACEFUL, UNITED, AND TOLERANT OF ONE ANOTHER!MY FAMILY AND I APPRECIATES THAT THERE CAN BE NO GREATER HONOUR THIS GREAT NATION HAS BESTOWED US THAN TO ACCORD ME THE OPPORTUNITY TO SERVE AS PRESIDENT. ZAMBIA, I THANK YOU! IT IS WITH IMMENSE GRATITUDE AND SENSE OF PRIDE THAT I SAW THE NATION JOIN ME ENTHUSIASTICALLY IN MY EFFORTS TO REVIVE THE GREAT ONE ZAMBIA, ONE NATION MOTTO.WE ARE ALL ONE PEOPLE, REGARDLESS OF OUR PARTY AFFILIATION. LET US ALL REMAIN A UNITED, PEACEFUL AND STABLE NATION. ZAMBIA IS OUR COMMON INHERITANCE.
NO ONE MUST BE ALLOWED TO SACRIFICE THE LONG-CHERISHED PEACE WE HAVE ENJOYED SINCE THE FOUNDING OF THIS GREAT REPUBLIC.GUIDANCE: EXECUTIVE OVERSIGHT AS PRESIDENT, I WANT TO ASSURE THE NATION THAT I WILL DO MY VERY BEST TO PROVIDE THE NECESSARY LEADERSHIP TO ENSURE THERE IS LAW AND ORDER IN THE REMAINING PHASE OF THE ELECTORAL PROCESS TOMORROW AND BEYOND.LET US ALL DO OUR PART IN THIS REGARD AND ALLOW STATE INSTITUTIONS CHARGED WITH THE RESPONSIBILITY TO DELIVER ELECTIONS DO THEIR WORK WITHOUT UNDUE INFLUENCE. THE ELECTORAL COMMISSION OF ZAMBIA (ECZ), THE ZAMBIA POLICE INCLUDING OTHER STATE AGENCIES MUST BE LEFT TO DISCHARGE THEIR DUTIES WITHOUT UNDUE PRESSURES.THE NEED TO OBSERVE LAW AND ORDER CANNOT BE OVER-EMPAHSIZED IN OUR QUEST TO KEEP ZAMBIA A PEACEFUL AND UNITED NATION.OUR DUTY AS CITIZENS NOW IS TO SUPPORT THIS FINAL PHASE OF THE ELECTORAL PROCESS TO RUN ITS FULL COURSE. THAT IS TO SAY VOTING, COUNTING,VERIFICATION AND THE ANNOUNCEMENT OF THE RESULTS.

COUNTRYMEN AND WOMEN,

AS HEAD OF STATE, MY PRIMARY RESPONSIBILITY IS TO PROTECT LIFE AND PROPERTY. I AM SWORN TO ENSURE THAT THIS IS ACHIEVED THROUGH THE ENFORCEMENT OF LAW AND ORDER.

LET ME THEREFORE TAKE THIS SOLEMN OPPORTUNITY TO APPEAL TO ALL CITIZENS, OUR CHERISHED VISITORS, MONITORS AND COOPERATING PARTNERS TO ADHERE TO THE RULES AND LAWS GOVERNING THE ELECTION SO THAT WE MINIMIZE POTENTIAL CONFLICT.

ELECTIONS ARE A MEANS OF FAIR COMPETITION ABOUT IDEAS, NOT A PLATFORM FOR ENIMTY. VIOLENCE CANNOT, AND SHOULD NOT BE THE CURRENCY OF POLITICS.

THE CURRENCY OF POLITICS SHOULD BE IDEAS. EXTREMISM AND OTHER ILLIBERAL VALUES HAVE NO PLACE IN OUR DEMOCRACY.

WE MUST ALL ASPIRE TO PROGRESSIVE VIRTUES OF TOLERANCE AS THE BEDROCK OF DEMOCRATIC CO-EXISTENCE AMID DIVERSITY.

I IMPLORE ALL CITIZENS TO REMAIN PEACEFUL AND SEEK THE FACE OF GOD. WE ARE A CHRISTIAN NATION, AND SO WE SHALL REMAIN.

LET US ALL REMAIN IN CONSTANT PRAYER TO ENSURE THE BLESSINGS OF THE ALMIGHTY GOD ARE WITH US.

THE ALMIGHTY GOD WHO HAS GUIDED THIS GREAT REPUBLIC WILL SEE US THROUGH TO YET ANOTHER EPIC CHAPTER IN THE LIFE OF OUR NATION.

I THANK YOU ALL,
MAY GOD BLESS YOU ALL,
GOD BLESS ZAMBIA!
LUSAKA, WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 10TH, 2016

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