The monitors who received intensive training in election monitoring conducted by CCZ Head of Programmes Abraham Chikasa were from Kasama, Nakonde, Mkushi, Serenje and Lusaka before taking part in the exercise. The essence of monitoring elections by the council is to guarantee the integrity of an electoral process, reinforce civic responsibility, reinforce voters confidence in the electoral process and to enhance voter participation.
Mr Chikasa described the monitoring of January 20 presidential elections as a quest to promote social justice and human dignity by undertaking programmes and activities such as election monitoring that contribute to the democratic process to ensure that the values of accountable governance are upheld in Zambia.
“The Council of Churches in Zambia is mindful of the fact that it ought to play an important role as a faith based institution in any national election so as to observe and contribute to the process of governance, peace and reconciliation,” he said.
He described the monitoring exercise as having been well executed with all the monitors adhering to rules and regulations of monitoring elections.
Meanwhile, the Council of Churches in Zambia took part in the interdenominational prayer service organized by government to pray for Peaceful Elections held at the Anglican Cathedral of the Holy Cross in Lusaka before the January 20 elections.
CCZ Vice-President Dr Edwin Zulu in his welcoming remarks during the service called on all Zambians to embrace peace, unity, tolerance and a sense of responsibility towards each other as responsible citizens despite their political affiliation ahead of polls.
“It is also the duty of political leaders to use their authority to restrain their followers from engaging in acts of violence which has been reported as happening sporadically across the country since the election campaigns began to avoid the spill over effects of violence after elections”, Dr Zulu said.
Dr Zulu urged all Zambians to use the God given knowledge and judgment in the process adding that their individual vote has power to collectively influence change and the outcome of the elections.
“We pray that as the country goes to the polls to elect a new president, it is our prayer that the truth will triumph through the outcome of the elections which will be a testimony of integrity, transparency, accountability and credibility.