Police stops Fr. Bwalya’s party launch rally

The Zambian Police has blocked Father Frank Bwalya’s party – Alliance for Better Zambia from going ahead with the rally slated for Kitwe this weekend.

The rally was aimed at launching the Catholic Priest’s party which was registered recently.

“We wish to inform our party members and the general public that the Police Force (PF) in Kitwe has asked us not to go ahead with the public launch of our party this weekend on 27th July 2013,” President Bwalya stated in statement to Zambian Eye  on Wednesday. “The politically motivated reason they have given is that police officers will be in Kafulafuta for the parliamentary by-election 25th July 2013.”

Fr. Bwalya said his party had rescinded its earlier decision that with or without a Police permit they would go ahead with the rally. He said ABZ will not to go ahead with the launch saying they have reliable information of plans by some senior members of a named political party to sponsor thugs and ex-prisoners to disrupt the public launch.

“Their plan is to target helpless women and children and severely beat them up to instill fear so that people would shun future meetings of our party,” Fr. Bwalya explained. “Since our party values human life, peace and social order we have decided to comply with the Police Force (PF) and postpone our public launch.”

The ABZ leader said the party would not want any of its members and supporters to shed blood on a day that they should shed tears of joy.

“We don’t want to have a bloody launch,” he said. “We believe that time is coming soon when we shall be able to enjoy freedom of assembly and expression.”

Fr. Bwalya has urged ABZ members to remain calm and not look at this unfortunate development as a setback but as a pothole that the party should carefully avoid and drive on. He charged that more of such potholes should be expected but assured that ABZ shall conquer.

He has since apologized for the inconvenienced caused to all those that intended to attend the rally.