Blood of Vespers is on the hands of PF – SP

By Staff Reporter

The blood of Vespers Shimuzhila, the University of Zambia student who died last Friday is on the hands of Patriotic Front government, opposition Socialist Party has stated.

In a statement posted on Socialist Party website yesterday, Vespers was a mere collateral damage in the pursuit for power and ill begotten wealth for the country’s ruling elite.

The Socialist Party also noted with regret and dismay, that barely hours after President Edgar Lungu promoted and swore-in former Southern Province police commissioner, Bonny Kapeso, as Deputy Inspector General, the life of a promising young Zambian, who struggled to get to the last year of her higher academic pursuit, had been cut short.

“Blood is on their hands and many more deaths are yet to occur,” reads part of the statement. “We can only conclude that Ms Shimuzhila’s death had to occur to justify the reward that the PF leadership has accorded to the likes of Mr Kapeso, who are being promoted for their brutal and sadist character. Ms Shimuzhila’s death is a trump card dangled by such police officers wanting to rise to the highest levels of the Zambia Police Service”.

The party expressed its deep regret and sadness over the death of Vespers who died from suffocation as the police brutality quelled a riot at the Great East Road Campus in Lusaka by throwing teargas canisters in students hostels in the early hours of Friday.

The statement further said it was regrettable that Vespers had to lose her life in such a naked show of brutality by the PF government.

“The Socialist Party has often warned that President Lungu and his PF government will become highly repressive as it fails to deliver on the economic front,” it stated. “The dire state of the Zambian economy, rampant high-level corruption, macroeconomic instability, increasing poverty levels, joblessness, swelling debt levels and inflationary pressures are all pushing the government towards a tipping edge”.

It stated that the repression and open brutality were meant to gag Zambians and stop them from expressing dissatisfaction with their miserable living conditions.

“This is not a coincidence. Such kind of naked brute force, as directed towards a group of hungry UNZA students demanding payment of their meal allowances, has been the policing hallmark of Mr Kapeso wherever he has been deployed to. There have been similar protests at the University of Zambia in the recent past but none resulted in death,” read a statement.

The Socialist Party being a revolutionary party of the working masses expressed its solidarity with the workers at the University of Zambia and encouraged them to continue demanding for the cessation of such unwarranted intimidation from those wielding power.

“The workers at UNZA should not back down on their demands for better working conditions because they are fighting for their democratic rights. This also goes to the students not to relent in demanding for their meal allowances, or they will starve to death,” the statement reads.

The party said it was regrettable and unacceptable that while the PF leadership increased and backdated their earnings, a cry from students for their meagre allowances they were met with brutal force, death and destruction

Vespers was a fourth-year student at the School of Education, pursuing studies in Adult Education and History.