UPND presidential spokesperson Anthony Bwalya says his detention a week ago was an opportunity to learn more about PF’s injustices.
Last week, Bwalya and Hakainde Hichilema’s special aide Mubita Nawa were jointly charged for forgery, uttering a false document and being found in possession of property believed to have been stolen or feloniously obtained, after spending days in detention.
In an interview, Bwalya said he would not be intimidated into silence.
“We are grateful that we are going through the inconveniences that we are going through. We appreciate the kind of problems that this country is going through. Our men and women in uniforms are professionals. They know what a crime looks like and they know who is likely to commit a crime. We will not be silenced by threats of arrests or being sent to jail when injustices are being committed on our soil by our people against our country and our people. We will continue to speak up. There will always be these things happening, when you speak up against an issue which the government is not pleased about, they will come after you, they will arrest you, they will try to take you to court. For us, we say that is an inconvenience, we say this because there is a huge amount of grand crime taking place in this country. And to a larger extent, these crimes are being perpetrated by people who are chosen to represent the wide public. But no one gets arrested, no one gets incarcerated. So, we feel this is also an opportunity for us to really get into understanding some of the greatest. You call us on Monday, and then you tell us you are going to charge us on Friday, what was the need for detaining us for four days? They could still have done their jobs without inconveniencing us. So, it’s important that our men and women in uniform exercise the highest level of professionalism,” said Bwalya.
“Let me tell you this on a personal level. Am I bitter a person, I would say yes I am. And let me tell you why I am bitter. Today Zambia should have been a $46 billion worth economy. We have squandered that opportunity. So, you want me to be happy after all the opportunities that we have squandered not just for ourselves, but for our children? That can’t work. This is going to be a referendum about the country that we deserve which we never had for the last 10 years. This is going to be about the country which we will be there in the next 100 years. And this is why for us as the UPND, we are very clear and we are very focussed about what the UPND should be. The people of Zambia are concerned with issues of national unity because they recognise that Zambia is anchored on peace. And this is something that we cannot throw away for the benefit of an individual or a political party. Zambian people are looking to the UPND and are asking, can we be the ones? Can we be the one to provide the necessary leadership which is going to ensure that come August this year, the political environment is going to be peaceful and the political environment is not going to endanger the lives of Zambians. We are absolutely committed to preaching peace.”