Police should stop violating our rights, demand UPND

By Staff Reporter

The opposition United Party for National Development (UPND) is saddened by what it termed police’s biased decision to stop the planned card renewal exercise in Eastern Province.

UPND Deputy Secretary General for politics Patrick Mucheleka said the position taken by police was baseless as it did not require police presence for his party to enjoy their rights to assembly and association.

“We do not need police presence in order to enjoy our fundamental rights under the Constitution. There is already precedence in the case of Christine Mulundika and others regarding the application of the Public Order Act. And all of us have to see to it that case law is relied upon as an important source of law in Zambia,” he said

“We also wish to point out that we always provide our own marshals to maintain law and order as provided for under the Public Order Act, The police’s decision is also biased because at a time they are blocking us from visiting Eastern Province, they have allowed the Patriotic Front Secretary General Davies Mwila to go ahead and mobilise his party in the same province,.”

He said their concerns as opposition on President Edgar Lungu’s dictatorship had been vindicated.

“It is sad that fundamental rights and freedoms of citizens have continued to be violated at a time when the international community is facilitating a meaningful dialogue process in the country. We are aware that Edgar Lungu and his PF are so scared of the UPND’s growing popularity. The people of Eastern Province have suffered a lot especially the farmers who have been receiving agro inputs late. To add salt to injury, hospitals and clinics have no drugs. Poverty levels are extremely high,” said Mucheleka.

“We urge the police not to fall into a trap of lawlessness and be influenced by ruling party cadres but to apply the law professionally because leaders come and go.”