HOME AFFAIRS Minister Stephen Kampyongo says UPND members are trying to cause chaos and instability by planning to accompany their party leader Hakainde Hichilema for questioning today.
Speaking during a press briefing, Tuesday, Kampyongo said the appearance of political leaders before the police and other law enforcement agencies was not a new phenomenon.
“I want to start by expressing our displeasure as the Ministry of Home Affairs in the manner in which members of UPND are reacting following the summoning of their leader Mr Hakainde Hichilema to appear at the headquarters for questioning. Government is aware of the mobilization by a few UPND supporters currently taking place in some provinces and their intention through this mobilisation is to cause chaos and instability in the country. It is a well known fact that this agenda is being organised by a few known individuals with a view to obstruct police investigation and subsequently stand in the way of justice. Zambia is a democratic country with a governance system premised on the rule of law. Every individual suspected to have committed a crime should be answerable to the law enforcement institutions without any interference,” Kampyongo said.
“We all know that in our country that no one is above the law and the law enforcement agencies should be respected by all citizens. And certainly political violence shall never be entertained to influence the course of justice in this country. The appearance of political leaders before the police and other law enforcement agencies such as the Anti-Corruption Commission, Drug Enforcement Commission and others is not a new phenomenon in Zambia and it has not been happening during the reign of my government because this has happened before during the reign of the previous government. You will recall that the former Republican president Frederick Chiluba may his soul rest in peace appeared before the courts of law for a prolonged period of time. No one obstructed the investigations and court proceedings until the outcome of the court of law were determined by our competent courts.”
He said no one was going to intimidate the police for them to fail to execute their professional mandate assigned to them.
“Some of our serving ministers have appeared before the ACC and their cases were heard in the courts of law. No supporters were entertained to protect the ministers from appearing before the courts of law to allow the wheels of justice to prove the allegations against them. Other former cabinet ministers are still appearing before the courts of law on various charges and no one is allowed to interfere with the court proceedings. There is no one who is going to intimidate the police for them to fail to execute their professional mandate assigned to them by the constitution of the republic of Zambia. Government is going to do everything possible to ensure that the police service is supported to enforce the law without fear or favour this is the only way that citizens will be guaranteed of protection and safety by its government,” he said
And Kampyongo said MMD leader Nevers Mumba’s fate would depend on the information that would come from the Democratic Republic of Congo saying the allegations levelled against him were so serious that they might have a security impact between the two countries.
“We as a government were concerned when we received that report. And I think frantic efforts were made through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to ensure that the government got to know what was happening to Dr Nevers Mumba. But ideally a person of that status is not just an ordinary political leader. He is a former Republican vice president and he still has that status so it is befitting for him to ensure that when he is exiting the nation, he makes formal notifications to the Ministry of foreign affairs so that the necessary protocols and courtesy are accorded to him. That can only be facilitated if there is prior engagement so that the missions in those countries where he is going are informed and know how to look after a man of that status. There are so many questions raised and of course he himself has confirmed to the media what transpired to him,” Kampyongo said.
“Our advice is that it will be important that Dr Mumba tones down on commenting on these matters because we have formal channels of communication between the government of Zambia and the DRC. Dr Mumba’s fate back home will depend so much on the information that will come from the DRC. Because the allegations levelled against him are serious and may have a security impact on Zambia and DRC. So we cannot allow those relations to be soured by acts of one individual. So for now it is important that everybody remains calm until such a time when consultations will be exhausted through the formal channels. It will be premature for me to make detailed comments on that predicament that Dr Mumba found himself in.”
Meanwhile, Kampyongo said UPND member Larry Mweetwa was not deported but was denied entry into the country for reasons known to security agencies.