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‘Dictatorship of worst order,’ Socialist Party threatens to disobey police no-rally order in Kitwe


The Zambia Police Service has reportedly canceled a political rally for the Socialist Party (SP) that was scheduled to take place at Kitwe’s Changanamai Grounds on the Copperbelt.

The party had applied to the Police in Kitwe District seeking permission to hold a rally at Changanamai Grounds in Riverside on Saturday, June 8, 2024.

Party General-Secretary, Dr Cosmas Musumali, confirmed the police’s decision at a media briefing in Lusaka on Friday.

Musumali, however, urged citizens to turn up in numbers for the rally, stating that the party does not need police permission, especially since it had provided notice to the authorities.

“SP President Dr Fred M’membe is going to speak to the nation on pertinent issues affecting the country, such as the high prices of commodities, political intimidation and violence,” he stated.

Musumali noted that the party had received a letter from the police informing them that the rally could not proceed due to the current political situation in the country, including Kitwe.

Read More: Moment suspected UPND cadres stormed Mandevu area to confront opposition party rally (Video)

“We went ahead thinking that after so many attempts to speak to the people of Zambia as a political party on issues that need answers, we would be allowed. But we are being told that we cannot go ahead because the situation in the country is volatile,” Musumali said.

He expressed concern about when the country would allow free speech, stating that since the 2021 general elections, no opposition political party had been permitted to conduct any rally under the UPND-led government.

“We have read and we have heard from the ruling party UPND that they are not going to allow any rally. This is dictatorship of the worst order. Under the PF, as a party, we were allowed at least two rallies,” Musumali said.

He stated that this situation is unacceptable and should not be tolerated, adding that a notification should not be a reason to stop the rally.

“We do not need police permission to go ahead with this rally. We are going to proceed on June 8, 2024, at Changanamai Grounds in Kitwe. Our members and supporters are welcome as SP President Fred M’membe will deliver a message of hope,” Musumali concluded.

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