On 18th July, 2021 Lusaka Times reported that six United Party for National Development (UPND) cadres had been arrested by the police in Solwezi district for conduct “likely to cause breach of the peace”. The report says the incident happened after Patriotic Front (PF) and UPND cadres clashed on the 17th pf July in Solwezi Central Business District. This was confirmed by the Northwestern province Commissioner of Police Mr. Joel Njase on 18th July. Mr. Njase alleged that the fights started as a result of UPND cadres being found in the wrong ward thereby, disturbing the peace. He added “according to the ECZ campaign schedule, PF is supposed to be in Tumvwanganai and Kyawama wards whilst UPND is supposed to be in Kyafukuma and Kivuku wards”.
The fact checking process has determined as true the claim that United Party for National Development (UPND) supporters were arrested in Solwezi following their clashes with PF supporters. In a phone interview with the iVerify team, North Western Province Commissioner of Police Mr. Joel Njase confirmed the arrest of the UPND supporters. Mr. Njase said the UPND supporters had not adhered to schedules provided to all political parties by the Electoral Commission of Zambia. He added that UPND’s failure to follow the campaign schedule led them to clash with PF members who they found in the ward that was meant for PF campaigns on that particular day. The ECZ explained to the fact checking team that “the Commission has worked out campaign schedules with all political parties at District level.” The Commission said the scheduled were done through their District Electoral Officers Offices in collaboration with all participating political parties in the various Districts. In addition to that, the iVerify team verified the video circulating on social media of the UPND cadres attacking PF members in a green PF branded Land Cruiser; confirming the geolocation and matching the descriptions of Solwezi residents to the cars and uniforms depicted. The fact checking team could not get the UPND representative’s side of the story on the incident.