CATHERINE MUMBA, HONE SIAME, Parliament, Lusaka
MINISTER of Home Affairs Stephen Kampyongo has urged individuals peddling lies about Zambia being a dictatorship and in a crisis to stop because their campaign is unpatriotic and unjustified.
And the Patriotic Front (PF) has urged Zambians countrywide to be wary of unpatriotic politicians and clergymen that have joined forces with some members of the international community to undermine the country’s sovereignty.
Mr Kampyongo said yesterday, when he presented a ministerial statement to Parliament on the security situation in the country, that democracy neither means lawlessness nor anarchy and failure to deal with those who break the law.
“After the arrest of some suspects for treason in April, there has been a deliberate and sustained campaign to paint the country as a dictatorship. However, democracy does not mean lawlessness and my government will, therefore, continue to uphold the law and apply it fairly and firmly,” he said.
Mr Kampyongo said despite the ill-advised campaign against the country, the security situation has remained calm and citizens are going about their business peacefully.
And Mr Kampyongo has warned that his ministry will not tolerate the harassment of citizens and government officials at the court premises.
He was responding to Milenge member of Parliament (MP) Mwansa Mbulakulima, who asked for the government’s description of the harassment of Minister of National Guidance and Religious Affairs Godfridah Sumaili on Monday by United Party for National Development (UPND) cadres at the Lusaka magistrates’ court.
And PF Lusaka youth chairperson Kennedy Kamba has challenged leaders claiming that Zambia has drifted into a dictatorship to state their position on the harassment of Rev Sumaili if they truly mean well.
“We would like to strongly condemn the harassment of Reverend Sumaili by UPND cadres. We are challenging the church mother bodies to condemn the behaviour of those unruly cadres.
“We demand that those cadres should be brought to book to guarantee the security of President Lungu’s press aide Amos Chanda, who has also been summoned by the same court. As youths, we will move in to protect government officials if those cadres are not brought to book,” Mr Kamba said.
Meanwhile, the police have warned UPND cadres to observe the law whenever they are at court premises or risk being arrested and prosecuted for being unruly, NANCY SIAME reports from Lusaka.
On Monday, some UPND cadres hurled obscenities on Reverend Sumaili and almost physically attacked her when she appeared at the Lusaka magistrates’ court.
Police spokesperson Esther Katongo said in a statement yesterday that the court premises are not places for campaigns but where every person should be free to go to without expecting any intimidation or harassment.
“We strongly condemn the conduct exhibited by UPND cadres reported to have harassed Rev Sumaili when she appeared at the Lusaka magistrates’ court,” she said.
And PF secretary general Davies Mwila has urged Zambians countrywide to be wary of people undermining the country’s sovereignty.
Mr Mwila said in a statement yesterday political parties should lead the people in development as opposed to engaging in retrogressive acts aimed at frustrating government’s efforts to improve the welfare of citizens.