Bennie Mundando

OPPOSITION United Party for National Development (UPND) says it would be an act of giving its “political prisoners” a Judas kiss if it goes ahead to participate in the Day of National prayers on October 18, 2020 without them being released.

UPND national chairperson Mutale Nalumango says in the absence of such an undertaking, her party sees no convincing reason for attending the day of National Prayers.

Speaking during an engagement with the party’s religious affairs committee at the secretariat in Lusaka this morning, Ms. Nalumango said it is hypocritical and pretentious to use of the word of God to perpetuate ethnic divisions and regionalism in the country by the ruling party.

She says it is regrettable that the PF is diverting from the true essence of prayer, fasting, and reconciliation by allowing those in power to continue syphoning and looting public resources.

“Our position on this issue is very clear. It will be hypocritical for us to participate in the prayers because that will mean endorsing hypocrisy. According to the Bible, the true fasting which God approves of is one where you free those who are falsely imprisoned.

“To lighten the burden of those who work for you, remove the yoke that binds people, to share food with the hungry and to give clothes to those who need them,” Ms. Nalumango said.

She has wondered what good would come out of fasting and prayers if the ruling party has continued to arrest and incarcerate opposition figures on flimsy charges.

“Who has reconciled the country since 2016? Have you seen any reconciliation? What good is fasting and prayer if you keep on fighting and quarreling all the time? Take (Patrick) Mucheleka out of prison then we can talk about praying,” she demanded.

Meanwhile, religious affairs committee chairperson, Pastor Kelly Mukonka has appealed to Government to reconsider its position on the use of school classrooms as centres for worship.

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