The Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) has advised stakeholders uncomfortable with the law that gives the president power to appoint commissioners to forward their concerns to the National Constitution Conference (NCC).
ECZ Public Relations manager Cris Akufuna says the commission is an independent institution that has demonstrated its autonomy through transparent and participatory processes and procedure in the management of elections in the country.
Mr Akufuna said this in a statement released as response to assertions from the Patriotic Front (PF) Vice President Guy Scott quoted in the Post questioning the credibility of the commission.
Mr Akufuna has since advised the PF and other stakeholders who are uncomfortable with the provision of the law to channel their concerns to the NCC which is currently deliberating the republican constitution, including the mode of appointing commissioners.
He said the matter of low credibility of the ECZ is Dr Scott’s perception which is based on his political position and is not representative of every Zambian.
He assured stakeholders and the general public that the commission will continue to provide transparent and participatory processes and procedure in the management of elections in the country.
Mr Akufuna said the commission’s composition and operations are guided by the Electoral commission act no. 24 of 1996 that states that it shall consist of a chairperson and not more than four members appointed by the President, subject to ratification by the national assembly.
He said the provision means that the Members of Parliament have the power to accept or reject names taken before parliament for appointment as commissioners.
Mr Akufuna said the law as it is does not give the commission power to change it.
Yesterday, PF Vice President Dr.Scott said the credibility of the ECZ is very low because commissioners are appointed by the President without consulting other stakeholders.