Lusaka - Zambian opposition parties have accused President Michael Sata's government of nepotism and abusing the courts in an open letter sent to foreign donors on Wednesday.
"President Sata has engaged in a concerted effort to install members of family and friends in all key positions of the country's economic management, assault the independence of the judiciary, and systematically eliminate democratic rights of the political opposition and freedom of expression," said the letter.
The 10-page document was signed by five parties including the former ruling Movement for Multiparty Democracy (MMD).
The letter said Sata's administration has contributed to a "rapid erosion of public trust across all of Zambia's institutions of government".
"Given the alarming circumstances related to the deterioration of governance in Zambia, we are calling on the donor community to closely monitor compliance of programmes by the state".
Sata has appointed family members to key government jobs, including brother-in-law Fredson Yamba as Secretary to the Treasury, son-in-law Godfrey Bwalya Mwamba as defence minister and another son-in-law Robert Sichinga as minister of commerce.
Sata was elected in 2011 after defeating Rupiah Banda in a tight race. Since taking office he has vowed to rid the country of corruption and fight unemployment.
Several high-ranking politicians - including Banda's eldest son - have been arrested and charged with corruption, a move seen by the opposition as politically motivated.