CORNELIUS MWEETWA SLAMS COPS FOR HARASSING Harry Kalaba
…says cops are working alone in harassing opposition
By Staff Reporter
“In reference to the action we saw on the Copperbelt where my brother the President of Citizens First Mr Harry Kalaba was ´seemingly harassed´ for going to the market,” Mr Mweetwa said, “That’s not what UPND stands for.”
27.11.22


The UPND spokesman Mr Cornelius Mweetwa has publicly caned state police for their wanton appetite to abuse Zambians and violate civil rights which has become rampant in Zambia.


Mr Mweetwa, a Legislator and Provincial Minister for the Southern Province made the statement on the heels of the public humiliation and harassment of Mr Harry Kalaba, the President of the opposition Citizens First party that occurred in the Copperbelt province of Zambia one week ago.


“In reference to the action we saw on the Copperbelt where my brother the President of Citizens First Mr Harry Kalaba was ´seemingly harassed´ for going to the market,” Mr Mweetwa said, “That’s not what UPND stands for.”


The provincial minister who sometimes doubles as government spokesman said the ruling party is averse to repeat rights violations, they perceive were committed against them by the previous government of the Patriotic Front (PF) although the jury is still out on his claims.
This is because opposition people are being arrested for days without charge, sometimes staying jail for months before trial date is set like in the case of former PF law maker Ms Mumbi Phiri still incarcerated in Mongu for almost one year now after being linked to a crime.


Mr Mweetwa warned the police that they could face sanctions if they continue punishing innocent Zambians because, “those (rights violations against Zambians) are things that were done against our President Hakainde Hichilema in the past we can’t condone them in the present.”


He said overzealous police must tone down and, “we ask those police with a political hangover to stop now. We don’t need police to harass the opposition. We don’t need police to continue to be an extension of partisan politics, we can meet the opposition in the marketplace of ideas without the help of the police.”


His remarks on the Kalaba harassment have been welcomed by commentators such as PF presidential aspirant Ambassador Emmanuel Mwamba who said, “if something was wrong under the PF administration, it remains wrong in the new dawn. It must be condemned”
Citizens First President Mr Harry Kalaba, a former Minister of Foreign Affairs was briefly held by the police in the Copperbelt province of Zambia last week for having lunch at the market with friends and sympathisers.


A pattern, however, has emerged in Zambia where state police arrest perceived foes of the ruling party for several days without charging them with a crime, mostly beyond 48 hours.


He western diplomats that used to condemn the previous PF administration at any whiff of human rights abuses have remained silent.
While Mr Mweetwa´s statement has been hailed as mature, many remain sceptic and even believe that the Minister is grand standing as the number of arrests in Zambia escalate among perceived enemies of the state.


President Hichilema for instance always tells police and other law enforcement to investigate before arresting but the arrests continue weekly anyway suggesting he is complicit to the violations.
Source: Hon. Cornelius Mweetwa official video statement

5 COMMENTS

  1. Why not ask the Minister of Home Affairs to answer for these anomalies taking place under his supervision. Is this not the proper way of handling this issue.

    Branding the men and women in uniform as unilaterally making their own rules is a very dangerous statement as their very existence relies on upholding law and order.

    There is need to get to the bottom of issues through the command. A house divided against itself can not stand.

  2. The police have a commander-in-chief, President Hakainde Hichilema. They also have a commandant, Lemmy Kajoba. There is also a police complaints commission where a citizen who has been mistreated by the police can complain. There is also a Human Rights Commission. There are also courts of law where the state can be sued for wrongful acts of the police. All these institutions are there for citizens to take advantage of. I find that opposition politicians love to be manhandled so that they can gain some publicity. The truth is that no one in the country would have heard that Mr Harry Kalaba was in Mufulira if this had not happened. Police who did this must be censured in the strongest terms.

    I know that Presidents do not like to publicly denounce the police since they depend on them for their personal and family security. To that end, I would like to suggest that the President’s personal security should be a SEPARATE institution from the police. We should have the equivalent of the United States Secret Service. The President must have a security detail that is separate from Zambia Police Service.

  3. The Men and Women in uniform have a duty to protect citizens regardless of their political affiliations. The police still have a hang over from the PF way of doing things. Why harass a political opponent? They did that to HH and want to do so to other opposition leaders. This behaviour must not be entertained.

    During ECLs reign the same Police on several occasions prevented HH from attending church services, go to the markets, travel to Chingola and other towns on the copperbelt including chipata among others. Those moves made PF more unpopular.

    These fools in Police Service were used by some PF politicians to murder those they perceived to be political opponents and sympathisers to HH.

    Do we want the same unprofessional behaviour to continue in the Police Service? If we can’t condemn such it will continue.

  4. The condemnation of harassing an innocent opposition leader for going anywhere in Zambia makes sense and should be applauded. But to claim that those who have committed crimes are being held longer than necessary is stupid, foolishness and madness. do you want the police and other LEA to sit back and watch criminals having a field day? Are you stupid? Let the law take its course. That is why normal people are quiet because they know that there is no abuse of any sort, the abuse is in the empty skulls of the accomplices to crimes of the thieves, looters,m plunderers, gassers and murderers. STUPID IDIOTS.

  5. THE ONLY PLEASING THING IS THAT FOR THE FIRST TIME IN THE HISTORY OF THIS COUNTRY A SERVING MINISTER FROM THE RULING PARTY HAS TOLD THE POLICE NOT HARASS APPOSITION LEADERS. THIS WILL BRING OBJECTIVITY IN LAW ENFORCEMENT. IT IS UNLIKE THE CASE WAS DURING PF RULE WHERE PF CADRES, LIKE KAMBA, WOULD ORDER SENIOR POLICE OFFICERS TO CANCEL THE RALLY PERMIT FOR THE OPPOSITION ON THE DAY OF THE RALLY FOLLOWED BY THE CORDONING OF THE RALLY GROUND BY ARMED POLICE OFFICERS.

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