The Alliance of Community Based Organisations (ACBOs) has called on President Hakainde Hichilema to address massive poverty, youth unemployment and gender disparities as he begins his inaugural term as Zambian leader.
In a solidarity message that coincided with the inauguration of the veteran opposition leader as Zambia’s number one Tuesday, the Zimbabwean group praised Zambian state institutions such as the Electoral Commission of Zambia and the neighbouring country’s security sector for delivering a poll that protected the will of the people.
Hichilema romped to a resounding victory at the expense of former leader Edgar Lungu, with a massive youth vote carrying the day.
Amid all the euphoria, ACBOs said called on the new Zambian administration to prioritise putting remedies to youth unemployment which currently stands at 22 in the neighbouring country.
“We call upon the newly elected HE Hichilema to address structural poverty that the people of Zambia is currently grappling with,” said ACBOs.
“We call upon the new government to priorities youth unemployment which currently stand at 22.63%.
“We call upon the new government to draft youth empowerment policies.”
The group also called upon the new Zambian government “to promote gender equality in all sphere of the Zambian society”.
ACBOs is a consortium platform and space for networking, peer learning and institutional capacity strengthening of community-based organisations.
It was founded by and for CBOs as a “loose” network of 20 members situated in and covering 8 provinces, largely rural.
READ FULL STATEMENT BELOW:
Message of Solidarity by the Alliance of Community Based Organisations (ACBOs) on Zambia Elections.
Today, the 24th of August 2021, the state of Zambia is inaugurating its 7th President. The Alliance of Community Based Organisations (ACBOs) salute the people of Zambia and would like to congratulate President Elect Hakainde Hichilema for securing the mandate with 2.8 million votes. The Alliance of Community Based Organisations (ACBOs) has followed the course of events in Zambia very closely, and was pleased with the manner in which the elections were conducted.
As ACBOs, we applaud the professional conduct exhibited by the election management body (Electoral Commission of Zambia) and the Zambian security sectors.
The Zambian elections bring to the fore the importance of civic education and the value of strong governance institutions that protect the general citizens. The elections of 12 August 2021 managed to get 13.5% of female members into the National Assembly. We call upon the new government to work towards gender parity in political representation.
SADC region is currently experiencing major demographic changes that include a youth bulge that played a significant role in the Zambian electoral process. It is pleasing to note that about 54% of the 7 023 499 registered voters were under the age of 35 years, making the majority of voters being young people.
We applaud the Zambian people for turning out in their numbers to speak through the ballot. It is with delight to note that 70.8% of registered voters came out to vote on election day. As the ACBOs, we appreciate the young people who participated and stopped the electoral process from being just another formality. This became a lesson to the rest of Africa that an electoral process is important and that it can unite people in their belief in democracy, development and the rule of law.
We applaud the smooth transfer of power
We call upon the newly elected HE Hichilema to address structural poverty that the people of Zambia is currently grappling with.
We call upon the new government to priorities youth unemployment which currently stand at 22.63%
We call upon the new government to draft youth empowerment policies
We call upon the new government to promote gender equality in all sphere of the Zambian society
We commend the professionalism, integrity and transparency of the Electoral Commission of Zambia