President Lungu, his fierce political rival Hichilema agree to resolve difference

By Jeff Kapembwa

Lusaka Zambia’s President Edgar Lungu and opposition leader, Hakainde  Hichilema, detained on treason charges, have resolved to put their differences aside and devise a road map to assist resolve all outstanding political difference ahead of the 2021 polls in a peace settlement to be brokered by the Commonwealth Secretariat.

The two parties resolved among other contentious issues to ensure that no party looks to past differences but forge ahead in fostering peace, stability and in public interest between now and 2019 after which it will be reviewed.

“Both being men of faith and devoted to the people of Zambia, have agreed not to look backward in order to promote peace, stability and look forward to the next elections to give dialogue and harmony a chance,”  Commonwealth Secretary General, Patricia Scotland,  said in Lusaka on Wednesday.

She, however, could not state whether Hichilema could be released from detention to foster constructive dialogue and that it was up to the Director of Public Prosecutions or other prosecuting authorities to decide and not the executive or the Commonwealth.

Scotland was one of high profile figures who came to try broker peace between political rivals. She has also visited Hichilema in prison. Former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo also met the opposition leader last week. Hichilema is being held at Mukobeko Maximum Prison in Kabwe, 150km north of the capital, Lusaka.

August 2017
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