UPND Alliance member Kelvin Bwalya Fube says police in Nchelenge District of Luapula Province yesterday disrupted a UPND procession led by its vice-president Mutale Nalumango.
But Luapula Province police commissioner Chilije Nyirenda has refuted the allegations and accused the UPND of trying to alarm the nation.
In an audio statement, Thursday, UPND Alliance member Kelvin Bwalya Fube said Nalumango and her entourage were attacked and intercepted by PF cadres and the police on their way to Mansa before they were later taken to Nchelenge police station.
“Fellow Zambians, I am forced to report on a very sad incident in the Luapula Province. Our vice president Mutale Nalumango of the UPND Alliance and her entourage, have been attacked by PF cadres and the police, on a peaceful procession. They were driving from Chienge heading back to Mansa. In between Chienge and Nchelenge, they were attacked and several UPND cadres have been brutally beaten, injured. The vice president Mutale Nalumango, I am glad to report she has not been injured but one of the presidents of the alliance, president Chikuse is quite injured. They have been bundled in motor vehicles by the police and are now being driven 40 kilometres to Nchelenge police post,” Fube said.
“We have maintained as the UPND Alliance that our campaigns are being hindered, our campaigns are being blocked, and our campaigns are being interfered with by the police and the PF cadres. This is exactly what the IG Kakoma Kanganja has instructed his boys to do. We all read what his notice said. They were going to be using force on everybody they felt they could use force on. It appears that this force is only targeted at the UPND Alliance and its members.”
Fube called on UPND Alliance members to maintain peace during the campaign period.
“My appeal is that we, as members of the Alliance, remain calm. But I ask that the leadership in Luapula Province rushes to Nchelenge police to go and assist the vice president, president Chikuse and our members. Please maintain peace and let us remain calm. We want to find out what the police are up to. In this campaign period, we don’t want to give the police and indeed this PF regime any excuse to stop these elections. We know what they are up to, but we should not allow them. I will keep you posted on the happenings,” he said.
“My last appeal is to the commissioner of police in Luapula Province to get on top of what is happening around the Nchelenge area, where our UPND Alliance vice president, running mate Mutale Nalumango and our members have been brutally beaten and attacked by PF cadres and the police, kindly assist us. It is no use trying to talk to the police IG Kakoma Kanganja, he has not been helpful so far. Fellow Zambians we know that in politics things happen, but this I can assure you, nothing happens without being planned. This is exactly what the Dr ordered, and we know who the Dr is, who is directing all this violence towards the UPND Alliance. Let us show them that we are peaceful people and that we are not interested in violence.”
But in an interview, Nyirenda accused the UPND of trying to alarm the nation.
“It is not true! No, that is not true! She has not been detained and it is not true that the police have beaten any of them. Just ask them to tell you something that is [true]. Let people talk about something that is deep down their heart, that is very true, that is very right than alarming the nation about something that is not there. Whether they are social bloggers or what, let them just talk about something real. Because you will alarm people, you will make people feel like something has gone wrong. There is nothing in Nchelenge of violence. Nalumango is free!” said Nyirenda.