Inspector General of Police Kakoma Kanganja says Police will investigate individuals who orchestrated falsehoods that led to the riots in Kitwe on the Copperbelt.

Thousands of Residents in Kitwe’s Kawama, Buchi and Chimwemwe fought running battles with the Police on Monday demanding that government explains the alleged sale of ZAFFICO industries to Chinese nationals.

State House press aide Amos Chanda followed up with a press briefing where he accused the opposition UPND leader Hakainde Hichilema of inciting Copperbelt residents to riots through his provocative statements on radio.

And in a statement issued to News Diggers! Tuesday, Kanganja warned that individuals who orchestrated the xenophobic attacks would be dealt with.

“Yesterday, some parts of Kitwe on the Copperbelt Province experienced riots which happened as a result of falsehood peddled by people with concealed agenda. Due to the foregoing, I wish to inform members of the public that police have instituted investigations in the matter,” he said.

“These investigations will not only focus on those criminal elements that took part in the riot and looting of two shops belonging to foreign nationals but will be extended to all those that orchestrated the falsehood which led to the disturbance. Police are also investigating those issuing racial and discriminatory remarks which are likely to propagate xenophobic attacks.”

“Section 67 of Chapter 87 of the Laws of Zambia criminalises any act of publishing false news whether orally or in writing or any statement, rumour or report which is likely to cause fear and alarm to the public or to disturb public peace. Further, section 70 of the same Act prohibits any person from expressing or showing hatred, ridicule or contempt for persons on the basis of their race, tribe, place of origin or colour,” said Kanganja.

“I am sending a warning to members of the public, Political Parties and any other grouping to desist from such criminal acts. The conduct by those behind the riots in Kitwe will not be condoned by Police; therefore, all those that had a hand in it will face the wrath of the Law. Members of the public are further advised to always verify any information before taking any action and should always follow the legally laid down procedures before doing so.”