Choma, Mazabuka riot over UPND defeat

UPND Cadres in Mazabuka and Choma yesterday, looted houses belonging to people suspected of belonging to the Patriotic Front (PF). They also burnt tyres on the high way, following the announcement of the official results of last Thursday’s polls by the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ECZ).

In an interview with Daily Nation, Mazabuka town clerk Wisdom Bwalya disclosed that UPND supporters in the district went wild and looted houses of suspected PF sympathisers immediately ECZ announced the election results.

Mr Bwalya said that there were protests in Mazabuka following President Lungu’s declaration as President-elect alleging that the ruling party had manipulated the results.

He further disclosed that all of the shops in the central business district were closed following the riotous behaviour by aggrieved residents.

Mr Bwalya, however, said that the situation had stabilised following quick action by the police to quell the unruly behaviour.

“There was chaos immediately ECZ announced the final results of the elections. Tension started around town just as the UPND diehards saw the margins grow in favour of the Patriotic Front and most of the shops in town immediately closed. UPND supporters started going round looting houses of those they suspected to be PF sympathisers. Now at least the situation seems to be stable after the police rushed there,” he said.

Mr Bwalya revealed that the riots were more heated in Mazabuka’s Magoye Township, where he said UPND cadres had closed the main high way and were burning tyres in the middle of the road.