Accept polls results -Ban Ki Moon

UNITED Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon has told Zambia’s nine presidential candidates in next month’s general elections to accept the final outcome as will be declared by the Electoral Commission of Zambia.

In a message delivered on his behalf by UN resident coordinator Ms Janet Rogan, Mr Ban told the presidential candidates to also be gracious in defeat and magnanimous in victory. Speaking during a meeting for presidential candidates organised by the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ) at the Mulungushi International Conference Centre, Ms Rogan said Mr Ban noted that the overriding responsibility for a successful election lay with political party leaders as they were in a position to encourage their supporters to engage in proper, peaceful behaviour. “I would like to offer some thoughts the UN Secretary General has presented to the General Assembly of all member States, including Zambia. Elections are not an end in themselves,” Ms Rogan said. She said the purpose of an election as articulated in Article 21 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, was to ascertain the will of the people regarding their government.

She said Zambia was a signatory to all the three Universal Declarations and encouraged the nation to support the efforts of member States.

She said political party leaders were also in a position to accept final outcomes as officially declared and be gracious in defeat and magnanimous in victory.

“Their commitment to peaceful conduct and to playing by the rules will largely define the actions and attitudes of their supporters,” Ms Rogan said.

She said Zambia’s democracy was long-established with a strong track record of producing peaceful democratic transitions.