Police command has fired Zambian heroes – residents

By Staff Residents

There has been a public outcry following the dismissal of four police officers from Sesheke on allegations that they beat up PF cadres during the just ended parliamentary by-elections characterized by massive violence.

A resident from Mongu, Kebby Kalima said the police force were not realising that they had dismissed heroes from the service.

Kalima said Shapa didn’t deserve the dismissal as he had done so much for Zambia and should instead have been promoted to a commissioner of police.

He said Shapa in 1988 started judo in Mongu’s Malengwa area under Father McKenna and became provincial champion in 1989 in 30 kilogramme category before he won the national champion in various weight categories in 1994.

“He became a youth champion under 55 kilogramme in 1995 enrolled as a police officer and as a new member of Lilayi judo. In 1996 took over as coach for Lilayi judo club and became police college judo club overall winners of the national judo championship,” said Kalima. “In the same year he qualified to join the national team in the men’s under 60 kilogramme category and was graded to 1st Dan Black belt in Lusaka by Father Jude McKenna,” said Kalima

He added that in 1997 he became a gold medalist in Zimbabwe open judo championship in the 60 kilogrammes category before minting another gold in Johannesburg, South Africa in zone six champion in the 60 kilogramme category.

Kalima said Shaapa received the president’s insignia for meritorious achievement from former president Rupiah Banda

And a Lusaka resident Francisco Mumba said retirement in national interest was a blessing to the affected Police officers.

Mumba said he personally knew Shapa Wakung’uma as a good police officer with whom he interacted often in his previous assignments in his working-life.

 

“National interest occurs at the instigation of the president, when he is of the view that one’s services are no longer required in the civil service. When an individual is retired in national interest they are entitled to full pension benefit as prescribed in the public pension services Act. In the case of Imasiku Vs Attorney General, the plaintiff was retired in national interest and the court ordered full payment of benefits,” explains Mumba.

 

He said one might have lost immediate benefits attached to their duty but were in a much better position as they were still young and could possibly engage into other productive services outside the police.

 

“Further article 189(2) of the Constitution allows one to draw his salary until they have been paid their benefit fully. Despite the reports of being fired have crowded the media, the police officers should not worry unless they could have been retired in public interest, which is a different matter,” he said.

 

He however, said the happenings from Sesheke and swift reaction of the police had exposed both police command and government to selective application of the laws of Zambia.

“I would like to offer solidarity to the gallant policemen recently relieved of their duties. The public is watching, the working class is watching! Aluta,” Mumba said.

Last week the Police Service Commission acting on behalf of President Edgar Lungu fired four officers from Sesheke police station.

The affected officers are senior Superintendent Commanding Officer Shaapa Wamunyima, second Officer Commanding Fleming Chilonga, assistant Superintendent Officer-In-Charge of the police station Bornface Lengwe and Constable Frederic Mujele.

And Police spokesperson Esther Katongo has confirmed that disciplinary action has been taken against some officers involved in policing the Sesheke by-election.

Katongo said a comprehensive ministerial statement would be issued in parliament within the course of the week.

President Edgar Lungu has just appointed police believed to be sympathetic to the PF to replace those fired last week.

Those appointed are Robert Ngosa, Mushita Chilekwa, Sichivu Sikaya, Wellington Mwansa and woman Constable Ruth Chibenga.