KABWE Central PF member of parliament Tutwa Ngulube says United States interim Chargé d’Affaires David Young should avoid involving himself in politics because politicians have no business with envoys.
Last week, Young condemned Ngulube for threatening to break protestors’ bones.
“Now, please allow me to share a couple of reflections on freedom of speech in Zambia; like the United States and other countries, Zambia is a signatory to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and thus committed to free speech. Some people say if you are criticizing the President, you are unpatriotic. One leader in the National Assembly said ‘government and party cadres should break the bones of its critics.’ That is inflammatory and not a peaceful exercise of freedom of speech. For me, freedom of speech needs to take place in the context of peaceful expression,” said Young.
However, in an interview, Ngulube denied ever issuing such remarks.
“We have no business with envoys. We are politicians so whatever we say as politicians, they should not get involved. They should remain in their diplomatic corridor. So tell him to stay away from politics unless it is really necessary. We know that he might end up abusing his role. For me, if he has evidence that I said what I said, he should have talked to me first than going to run to the press,” Ngulube said.
But when reminded that there was a video of him threatening youths who had planned a protest against corruption, poor governance and violations of their freedoms of expression, the deputy chief government whip claimed it was propaganda.
“I never posted any video. That is where you guys keep making a mistake. You can’t come across a video and say that it is authentic. Who took that video? There is a lot of manipulation on social media and unfortunately, you guys are downplaying the role of propaganda. There is so much propaganda. As far as I am concerned, I have never made such a statement,” said Ngulube.
Last month, a video circulated where Ngulube urged police officers to break bones of youths who would protest.
“We have heard that there are youths and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) who are masquerading as protestors. The idea is to go into our towns, loot shops so that the country can look like it’s ungovernable. But we want to urge the police that they should not take them lightly. The police must deal with all these law breakers with the force that they can. These are the same people who started masquerading; they became gassers from nowhere; they became serial killers and now they want in the name of protests to start breaking the law with immunity. Zambia is a peace loving country and the people of Zambia are not interested whatsoever in all these protests that they are trying to put up,” said Ngulube.
“And we urge the Zambian people not to be used because very soon, they will be dumped and abandoned. And we want to urge the youths to say anyone who will participate in such kind of activities will be treated as a law breaker and we urge the police that when you detain such people, don’t even give them a police bond. Let the people of Zambia live their lives in peace. We cannot be incited, every time one politician or one NGO is not happy with anything, they should take our people in the streets. The police must be ready for them to break their bones if possible. Let the people know that a law breaker is law breaker.”