Some excited motorists Friday defied government and MMD threats as they honked in support of their demands for the State to appeal in the case where former president Fredrick Chiluba was acquitted of corruption charges.
At exactly 17 hours local time, Cairo and Cha Cha cha roads were engulfed into noise issuing from honking motorists.
No incidence of violence was witnessed by the time of writing this article as there appeared to be no interference from either police or MMD cadres.
Some pedestrians also joined in by blowing whistles in the demonstration that took about ten minutes.
Government is yet to respond to the decision by NGOs to go ahead and honk but the honking was nothing compared to the noise made during the anti-third demonstrations in 2001.
On Wednesday, a Consortium of 18 CSOs warned that they shall adopt some of the anti-third term campaign strategies in support of the demands for an appeal against Chiluba’s acquittal.
But the Luapula Province Chiefs Council has come out in full support of the acquittal of second republican President Fredrick Chiluba.
The Chiefs have advised all people accusing President Rupiah Banda of facilitating the acquittal of Dr. Chiluba to desist and instead respect the court’s decision that the former head of state is not guilty.
The chiefs said the people should respect the judgment on the former President adding that the Zambian courts were competent enough to error in acquitting Chiluba.
In a statement to from Mansa, incoming Provincial Chiefs Council Chairman, Chief Chisunka said the traditional rulers feel Dr. Chiluba had suffered enough humiliation and tribulation since he was charged with the cases eight years ago.
“We are still concerned that despite being acquitted our son; Dr. Chiluba is still attacked and still considered guilty by some politicians and sectors of society. The man if proven free by the court and that ruling should be respected,” the chiefs said.
They said Dr. Chiluba had already been judged and found guilty in the public eye before the courts of law could judge him.
They stated that the former President needed to be given a respite after the eight year long battle with the court which has since found him innocent.
The traditional leaders noted that those still questioning the acquittal of Dr. Chiluba were transgressing against the judgment by the competent judicial system of Zambia and should be charged with contempt.
Chief Chisunka said the traditional leaders feel that politicians should learn to accept and respect the outcome of the Chiluba case noting that some of them had also been acquitted before after being accused of committing similar offences at the dismay of the public.
“Politicians should forget and bury the hatchet and remember that the courts are there to bring peace not to bring confusion, we have confidence in the law system of our country so let’s just accept the judgment and move forward”, the chiefs said.
The chiefs cautioned all those planning to demonstrate against Chiluba’s acquittal not to extend the demonstrations to Luapula Province because people there are not in support of such demonstrations.
Chief Chisunka said the chiefs in the province will fully embrace the former head of state as their son in the province and will not tolerate any kind of influence from politicians to destabilize the good relationship they have with Dr. Chiluba after and when he served as President.
He said traditional leaders were concerned with some pronouncements by some sectors of society and politicians to demonstrate against the acquittal of Dr. Chiluba and suggestions to appeal against the judgment.
And the leaders have advised that President Rupiah Banda not to listen to accusations of engineering the acquittal of Dr. Chiluba.
The rulers urged the public and politicians to avoid dragging the President into the issue but respect him as the incumbent head of state.