Police in Lusaka have denied Patriotic Front youths permission to hold a protest procession to NDC leader Chishimba Kambwili’s so that they can petition him to stop insulting President Edgar Lungu, citing security concerns.
And PF provincial chairman Paul Moonga says the party will comply with the police order but will make a fresh application.
In his letter addressed to the PF provincial executive, Lusaka Province Commissioner of Police Nelson Phiri advised the party not to go ahead with the planned protest citing the unconducive security situation in the country.
“We acknowledge receipt of your notice of intention to conduct a protest on 6th September, 2019. However, we want to advise you that the security situation in the city is not conducive for such an activity to take place without jeopardizing law and order. Therefore, we further advise you not to go ahead with your intentions. Our doors remain open for dialogue,” stated Phiri.
And in an interview, Moonga said the party would make a fresh application for a more conducive date.
“We are a party in power and so we should lead by example. Once the police say ‘no’, we should follow them because they are in charge of security while we are in charge of politics. So, commissioner Phiri is in charge of Lusaka Province and he knows because he is a professional and we need to abide by his advice. So we are not going ahead. We will write again for another alternative date. We will write a fresh one and see which date the police will think will be suitable for us to take the petition to Honourable Chishimba Kambwili. Anyway, he is not even honourable because we can’t have someone with vulgar language and calls himself as honourable,” Moonga said.
Moonga said the party would not be intimidated by Kambwili’s threats to institute contempt proceedings because it had qualified lawyers to defend it.
“He can go ahead and sue us [if he wants]. He has got every right to sue anybody because he is Zambian. We are not even afraid of that [because] we have competent men and women lawyers in the PF and they will defend us. We are just using the right to demonstrate. Petition is part of constitutional right for any citizen to petition what happens. And we are taking it (petition) to his house because his house is not a gazetted court. So how can it be contempt? So we want to take the petition right to his hand to say ‘my friend what you are doing is wrong,” he said.
Moonga advised Kambwili to make an honest apology to both the party and the country at large for insulting the President.
“And if the man was wise enough, he could have apologized, but you see, when you have a demon, it is difficult. I think the man requires deliverance. He needs to be prayed for because once the demon comes out of him, it will refrain. But his character is like that of Nebuchadnezzar, he will end up eating grass. So we need to pray for this young man,” he said.
Asked if the party would accept Kambwili’s apology if the NDC leader decided to make it, Moonga said President Lungu had a big heart to forgive all those who wronged him.
“We will consider his apology but it is also about the manner in which you apologize. It matters most on how you humble yourself. Here is GBM, he came back. Our president is one man who is full of humility. He easily forgives and forgets. So I can guarantee Chishimba Kambwili that if he is human being enough, through your press or through the media, I am appealing to him to first of all this week, he must go to church and humble himself before God and ask for forgiveness from the people of Zambia and Africa at large,” said Moonga.
Meanwhile, NDC national youth chairman Charles Kabwita commended the police for halting the PF planned demonstrations.
“We want to commend the police command in Lusaka for halting the planned demonstration by PF thugs to the residence of Dr Chishimba Kambwili tomorrow (today). Police have demonstrated professionalism by denying PF cadres from taking to the streets, this is how it ought to be. The decision by the police command to block the unpopular protest is a clear sign that no one is above the law. The police service should act impartially in the execution of their duties particularly when handling political issues. The police have the right to protect both ordinary and private citizens from any acts of violence and reprisals. In this regard, we urge the police service command in Lusaka to move a step further and arrest PF Secretary General Davies Mwila for inciting violence,” stated Kabwita.
“Mwila is on record issuing threats against Dr. Kambwili. Further, police should sternly deal with Mwila who is the organiser of the planned protests against Dr. Kambwili. We urge police to ensure that the said demonstration should not take place. We say so because the PF are in the habit of taking the law in their own hands. As followers of Dr. Kambwili, we want to restate that we stand ready to protect our leader from any form of attacks. If PF thugs dare us, we shall meet them head on. The police command is in this regard implored to keep vigil and ensure that no protests take place tomorrow.”