ALLIANCE for Community Action (ACA) executive director Laura Miti says it is very unfortunate that President Edgar Lungu stands on the side of those accused of crime.

Last week, Patriotic Front Eastern Province Youth chairperson Emmanuel J Banda, commonly known as Jay Jay, said people were trying to tarnish his image because he was President Lungu’s defender.

But, in an interview, Miti said it was disturbing that Jay Jay was granted bond after being arrested for raiding Lusaka Central Police station and beating a police officer.

“PF cadre Emmanuel Banda, otherwise known as Jay Jay, is accused of having attacked and robbed police officers at the Lusaka Central Police Station. That under Zambian law is the very serious offence of aggravated robbery that does not attract bond or bail. It is therefore disturbingly unlawful that Jay Jay was granted bond. Out on bond, he went on to suggest to the public why he was treated unlawfully favorably. He stated that he is President Lungu’s friend. While it cannot be proved that President Lungu had any involvement in police failing to charge Jay with the appropriate charge, what is clear is that Jay Jay himself feels untouchable. His parade in Chipata, after his release, was an affront to the law, to law enforcement officers and to citizens. The lesson from this is that President Lungu, by repeatedly standing on the side of those accused of crime, has taught his ‘friends’ a very unfortunate lesson of impunity,” said Miti.

Jay Jay has said some people were fighting him because he was President Lungu’s defender.

“These issues…it is just people who can’t understand to say now we are fatigued. Let other people also play a certain number. They don’t want to understand. Politics is like football; when you are at peak, you play well and if there is someone who is at peak, it is better you are on the bench but on the same team. Let that boy who is doing fine, let him be on that number so that when you score, you celebrate together. But I can tell that there are some people who [don’t] understand that. And I am sure they have seen that I am the number five if we come into politics. I am the number five defender for our President Dr Edgar Chagwa Lungu. And I can assure you that kwasu tikuti uka shanga bwino mbeu chaka cho kolola ukolola bwino. So a Edgar Chagwa Lungu, a president achipani cha Patriotic Front ashanga bwino and chaka cha mawa tifunika ku kolola. Koma chili kuli seo ma defender tifunika kubalabilila kuti a president wasu ashanga mbeu mwakuti na mwakuti izii na izi ni mbeu zabwino. (Where I come from, we say when you sow a good seed, you will harvest good crops. So President Lung has sowed good works; the coming year, it will show, so it is up to us the defenders to speak on his behalf the works he has done),” said Banda.