Internet shutdown irks CLRI’s Mundia Paul Hakoola
Internet shutdown irks CLRI’s
Mundia Paul Hakoola
By Derrick Sinjela
CONTINENTAL Leadership Research Institute (CLRI) Executive Director Mundia Paul Hakoola
is deeply concerned a shutdown of the internet especially on whatsapp and Facebook applications at a time when remained with barely a day before having elections.
In a Tuesday 10th August, 2021 Media Statement on Shutting Down The Internet is act of Sabotage and Dictatorship, Mr. Hakoola expressed worry that a shutdown of the internet and fidgeting of social media platform, would once imposed delay issuance and dissemination of results, thus sabotage on the democratic process of Zambia.
In seeking Zambia Information Technology (ZICTA) intervention, Hakoola noted that the act of delaying results dissemination heightened suspicion, anxiety and brought the credibility of the electoral process in question.
“CLRI calls on ZICTA to restore the internet and all online applications this is a direct conflict with democratic process where citizens are supposed to access information, at time of elections citizens expect results not speeches from ECZ officials, as an institute we are disappointed with slow purse of ECZ to announce results we expect them to do better and their mandate is that they should be able to announce the results and they don’t have the mandate to declare results not admissible or not as that is the preserve of the constitutional court, they have duty to ensure that the results announced are agreed among stakeholders who have also verified them,” prayed Hakoola.
Admonished Hakoola: “We call on ZICTA to remove the ban on internet applications as this is source electoral distrust and an unfortunate event only practiced by dictators, ZICTA should explain to the Zambian people why it’s blocking citizens from accessing information this is criminal and ZICTA should put its act together,” prayed Hakoola.
The CLRI called on the electoral body to efficient in the way they handle 2021 results, as this was not the first time, ECZ handled elections so, we expect them to be above bond in the way the handle matters, the delay is causing electoral parties to suspect malpractice which not good for the electoral process,” advised Hakoola .
Hakoola called upon the losing party to accept defeat and ensure that they accept defeat.
“The PF if they lose they should be able to accept and not be in a defensive mode because there a ruling and only them being in defensive can bring war in Zambia,” noted Hakoola.
Hakoola’s position was supported by a Media Statement by the international community, especially the United States (US), noting that to state that Washington’s is ready to impose sanctions on anyone undermine the electoral process of Zambia.
“We fought so hard to be where we are and we can not afford a have certain individuals or entities to take us backward with what we have achieved,” admonished Hakoola.