Police in Kitwe have arrested 14 juveniles belonging to a notorious group called ‘Tokota Boys’ that has been mercilessly beating and robbing of people.
In a statement, Wednesday, Zambia Police spokesperson Ester Mwaata Katongo said the 14 were arrested in connection with a video circulating on social media.
The video in question is showing the boys beating up a male person gruesomely with sticks and stones.
She said the police were still looking for three more boys and the ring leader called ‘Mayweather’.
“14 thugs who participated in the gruesome beating of the male person in the video circulating on social media have been arrested by Police. A stick and stones used in the beating of the victim also recovered. Officers have gone back in the field to apprehend the remaining 3 culprits including the ring leader called Mayweather who was using a stick,” Katongo said.
“All of them who call themselves Tokota boys are detained in cells. The incident happened in Kitwe.”
She said the police were also working hard to nab the men who raped a woman in another video which went viral.
And the Human Rights Commission has the quick action bob police to arrest the boys.
“The Human Rights Commission condemns the subjecting of a 16 year old boy in Kitwe to torture and other forms of cruel, dehumanising and degrading treatment or punishment and commends the Zambia Police Service for their rapid response towards investigating and arresting the suspects.
The developing trend of youth gangsterism, particularly in some parts of Copperbelt and Lusaka Provinces, who are victimising individuals is deeply worrying and must decisively be stopped before becoming out of control. Gansterism infringes on a wide range of human rights and freedoms. Victims are physically, psychologically, sexually and verbally abused while others are deprived of their property and the right to freedom of movement, security of a person and the right to life are under constant threat and attack,” HRC spokesperson Mweelwa Muleya said in a statement, Wednesday.
“The reported forcing of the 16 year old boy in Kitwe to eat his own faecal matter and subjecting him to other forms of cruel, dehumanising and degrading treatment or punishment must attaract the appropriate punishment of the perpetrators as may be meted out by the courts of law. The Commission therefore looks forward to the due process of the law taking its course, which includes taking the supsects to the courts of law within the legally stipulated timeframe and according them their right to the protection and benefit of the law as enshrined under Articles 13 and 18 of the Bill of Rights.”
He urged police to investigate the underlying factors behind the formation of such gangs.
“The Commission also wishes to encourage the police to thoroughly investigate the undercurrents relating to the formation of such criminal gangs of youths and come up with effective measures towards stamping out gansterism. In most cases dehumanising effects of poverty, negative peer pressure and drug abuse are catalysts for such juvenile delinquency manifesting itself in organised criminal gangs. This requires the involvement of everyone in supporting law enforcement officers in preventing and combating organised crime. In particular, the parents and guadians of such youths have a critical role in providing counselling and guidance and must co-operate with law enforcement officers in the process of reforming the youths through the established criminal justice system,” stated Muleya.
“The Commission also commends members of the public for their continued support to the Zambia Police Service in maintaining security by identifying and reporting the perpetrators in order to create a conducive environment for all law-abiding individuals to freely operate and live.
The Commission is concerned about such acts of lawlessness because breakdown of law and order grossly undermines the enjoyment of human rights and freedoms. Maintainace of law and oder and respect for human rights and freedoms are two sides of the same coin and must always be maintained and respected for the betterment of everyone in society.”
Meanwhile, another group calling itself ‘Sons of the Devil’ Tuesday night attacked and beat up a 17-year-old girl.
The incident happened in Kitwe’s Buchi area as the girl was walking to Chimwemwe township around 20:00 hours.
According to eye witnesses, the group stopped the girl at a place called ‘Robbots’ before grabbing her cell phone and beating her up.
But the police say they have not yet received the report on the latest attack.