THE Presidency has rubbished claims by the UPND that President Lungu yesterday called a meeting for Service Chiefs at which it was directed that the Head of State should be declared winner of the Thursday general elections.
Amos Chanda, the special assistant for press and public relations to President Lungu has also dismissed assertions by the UPND that the Head of State had directed the arrest of Hakainde Hichilema soon after his declaration as the winner of the general elections.
Yesterday, the UPND issued a statement claiming that the Defence Forces had been directed to manipulate the results of the general elections in favour of the Head of State and the ruling party.
UPND secretary general Stephen Katuka claimed that the UPND had information to the effect that a meeting of the Joint Service Chiefs was called by President Lungu yesterday morning at which it was agreed, amongst other things, that they should find means and ways to manipulate the electoral process.
But Mr Chanda said the police should instead move in and arrest Mr Katuka because his claimed bordered on electoral criminality and a breach of the electoral laws.
“The President has not met with the Service Chiefs nor has he given directives that he should be declared winner of the general elections. The President has not even issued directives to arrest Mr Hichilema and Mr Katuka should be arrested instead because his statement borders on criminality. Mr Katuka’s statement is reckless, irresponsible and out rightly foolish,” Mr Chanda said.
Mr Chanda stated that President Lungu was headed for a comfortable win and had given the opposition to reflect on the Thursday vote and it was therefore irresponsible for the UPND to issue alarming statements.
He said the ECZ had only announced results from less a third of the Constituencies from which results were showing that President Lungu was enjoying a comfortable lead.
Mr Chanda said independent assessment of the results had clearly shown that President Lungu was winning the elections.
Mr Katuka however claimed that President Lungu had directed that he should be declared winner by midnight last night with a margin of between 52 and 54 percent and that Mr Hichilema be arrested should there be any adverse reaction to the declaration.
He further alleged that Government was planning to deploy the armed forces and police to suppress any resistance to the declaration of President Lungu as President with 54 percent of the votes.
Mr Katuka also claimed that the meeting agreed that Samuel Chavula, the man who was arrested for being in the server room of the ECZ results centre on Friday, be released forthwith.
…as Lungu is projected to win
PRESIDENT Edgar Lungu and the Patriotic Front set to win the Thursday general elections with a clear 56 percent majority vote eliminating the possibility of a rerun.
According to the Patriotic Front (PF) elections monitoring team projections, the ruling party was headed for a clear victory in seven Provinces with Mr Hichilema and the UPND only managing 46 percent of the vote.
According to the statistical tabulations by the PF elections monitoring team, the PF had swept Central, Copperbelt, Eastern, Luapula, Lusaka, Northern Provinces and Muchinga Provinces.
On the other hand, the UPND has maintained its traditional strong hold in Southern, North-Western and Western Provinces where the opposition party had recorded its highest wins ranging from 86 percent to 88 percent.
Mr Hichilema and the UPND amassed 88 percent of the vote in Southern Province, 87 and 86 percent respectively in North-Western and Western Province while the PF and President Lungu got the highest vote in Muchinga Province where it recorded 85 percent of the win.
In Central Province, the ruling party recorded 56 percent win while the UPND reduced its dominance and settled for 44 percent of the total vote cast in the region.
According to the projections, the UPND has significantly gained on the Copperbelt which has been a deciding region recording at least a 35 percent gain but could not unseat the ruling party that scored 65 percent.
In Eastern Province, the PF maintained its supremacy with a convincing win of about 79 percent while the UPND only managed poultry 21 percent while in Luapula, the PF hammered 83 percent compared with the opposition party that settled for 17 percent.
In Lusaka, the region the UPND claimed had taken over in terms of popularity, the PF garnered 63 percent against the opposition party that ended with 37 percent.
The governing party was projected to have capped its victory with a landslide win of about 80 percent in Northern Province where the UPND managed to register its presence with a 20 percent vote in its favour.
In Southern, North-Western and Western Provinces, the PF has remained dwarfed in popularity only managing 13, 12 and 14 percent respectively.