The Patriotic Front media team has reacted to the News Diggers opinion in which the online newspaper publication questioned the lack of coordination between President Edgar Lungu’s spokesperson Amos Chanda and the Inspector General of Police Kakoma Kanganja, before the arrest of UPND leader Hakainde Hichilema.
In this response sent to News Digger by PF journalists and published by a PF media page (https://www.facebook.com/patrioticfrontzambia/?hc_ref=SEARCH&fref=nf) “, the author says President Lungu ordered the police to overtake HH’s vehicle in Mongu without causing any loss of life.
The writer further says the Head of State, as he usually does, chose to lower the window of his bulletproof car in order to catch a glimpse of the people and also to hear for himself what HH was saying.
Below is the full statement issued by the PF media team:
AN INDEPENDENT RESPONSE TO NEWS DIGGERS OPINION PIECE DATED 18th April, 2017
True to note and in agreement with the booming social media page run by former post employees most likely with the hand of the former Post Newspaper proprietor Fred M’membe, all of us who did not witness Hakainde Hichilema obstruct the Presidential motorcade can only present our comments as general opinion.
However, we thank scientists for new age technology that accords us an opportunity to witness events that we may not have been a part of and make our own judgement.
Video evidence of the unfortunate incident from various angles has surfaced on social media and is splashed on various sites, it is this evidence that makes us refuse to accept the coined term in the News Diggers opinion ‘road rage.’
Definition of road rage
: a motorist’s uncontrolled anger that is usually provoked by another motorist’s irritating act and is expressed in aggressive or violent behavior.
President Edgar Lungu clearly avoided road rage despite the provocation from Hichilema, we learn from the Presidential Spokesperson Amos Chanda that the head of state’s instruction was to ensure peaceful by pass with no bloodshed….
“….. I will not allow a single life to end, nor endanger lives of many…” This is allegedly the statement or instruction President Lungu gave and from this, one can see a leader who packs his ego and chooses to soar like an eagle.
In this regard we find News Diggers blame of Hichilema’s actions entirely on the Inspector General as very unfair because one can clearly see from the video that Hichilema’s actions were meant to flex his muscle and show ‘he is boss’ or equal to HE. Not only the video evidence brings us to this conclusion but past evidence does to.
Hichilema has constantly challenged that he is Zambia’s president so he seized the opportunity to flex his muscle and show his supporters ‘his boss’.
Hichilema decided to defy a police directive and stalled his vehicle to meet and greet people with knowledge that the Presidential motorcade was behind.
*Now let us attempt to answer the points raised by News Diggers:*
1. Protocol demands that a head of state must be the last to arrive….
President Lungu was behind Hakainde Hichilema unless you did not see that the motorcade was coming from behind. However, did you expect the head of state to stop and wait for Hichilema to finish his meet and greet? Should Hichilema hold the entire programme and keep the Litunga waiting?
Unlike Lusaka and about six other provinces Hichilema finally finds people in Western Province who want to shake his hand… But should this hold the whole programme, is Hichilema supposed to stall the President of Zambua because he wanted to wave his hands to supporters and show he commands some political support?
2. It is the statutory duty for police to clear vehicles or moving objects….before the head of state uses the road….why did police fail to clear off any of the vehicles which were behind UPND entourage before attempting to bump off the first car in the convoy.
Come on guys… common knowledge, common sense!!!
If the first car stops the rest will stop… unless maybe the other vehicles have some James Bond technology that they will produce wings and fly over the first car. That simple, that was the logic used?
Secondly we will pick a nasty idiom, if you want to kill a snake what do you do?
Right, you chop off its head…. I would like to believe that if Hichilema who is the Head of UPND was made to stop the rest of his followers would have stopped moreover, if Hichilema the head had made a deliberate attempt to stop his vehicle after hearing the Presidential serene all other vehicles behind him would have fallen back. Take note “leaders are meant to instruct followers.”
3. Why was President Lungu’s window open?
President Lungu has on several occasions kept his window open probably to equally get a glimpse of people. Most times he actually stands through the sun roof. I will speculate here and tend to believe the head of state must have been very shocked at Hichilema’s behaviour and probably wanted to see and hear for himself what the opposition leader was doing. But I do agree with the News Diggers Hichilema is a hostile man leading a hostile opposition party, President Lungu should be wary…
But well we all know what one Mr Edgar Chagwa Lungu would say, “I am protected by the armour of God.”
Another point we agree with the News Diggers is their observation that Hichilema’s Driver did not pull over obviously because his boss told him to go neck to neck with Eagle One. This is because Hichilema does not recognise President Lungu as the elected ruler of the Republic of Zambia.
We just wonder what further investigation News Diggers are requesting for police to carry out before arresting Hichilema when all can see how he disobeyed traffic rules, the security act and in so doing threatened the life of the Republican President.
And in a simple response, the IG was not at the scene to be communicated with for instructions, the commander in chief who was at the scene took charge and gave an instruction not to bump anyone off the road because he valued life….
So we pose a question should the police command and intelligence have defied an order from their commander in chief.
Mr Chanda who speaks for the Presidency said they were clear that no danger was posed to the President, I tend to believe that police do not work independently with regard to security of the nation and the head of state but they work as a team of State House, Police, intelligence and so on.
But we guess it is upto the court but let us not start arm twisting the Director of Public Prosecutions Ms Lillian Siyunyi and begin to offer the matter as a career test because she already past that test and hence being appointed DPP.
Every case should be important to her and let’s not flag politicians above other citizens. For us every case is important and should receive fair judicial attention.