Edgar Lungu Condemns State Actions Amid Abduction and Arrests

Former President and Patriotic Front (PF) Party Leader, Dr. Edgar Chagwa Lungu, has voiced strong condemnation of the recent political developments in Zambia, citing a departure from the rule of law, respect for human rights, and constitutional democracy.

In a statement released Former President Lungu highlighted the troubling incident on 25th May 2024, involving the abduction and disappearance of Hon. JJ Banda, Member of Parliament for Petauke Central. He said attempts by concerned citizens to seek answers from the Zambia Police was met with state violence, as riot police deployed tear gas on peaceful protesters at Ibex Hill station.

The fallout from this incident saw the swift arrest of several prominent figures. Human rights activist Brebner Changala, FDD President Edith Nawakwi, Lumezi MP Munir Zulu, and Mfuwe MP Maureen Mabonga were detained and charged with politically motivated offenses such as “hate speech” and “seditious practices against the State.”

Below Is The Full Statement

Good Afternoon Fellow Citizens, Men, Women, and the Youth,

The current political happenings in Zambia are confirming that we are completely abandoning the rule of law, respect for human rights, and constitutional democracy. On 25th May, 2024, we all woke up to a sad development—the abduction and disappearance of Hon. JJ Banda, Petauke Central MP. When we tried to seek answers and solace from Zambia Police, the state decided to discharge riot police to throw tear-gas canisters on all of us at Ibex Hill station. This was a mark of state brutality on peaceful citizens!

As different stakeholders responded in anger and anguish to the abduction and disappearance of Hon. Jay Jay Emmanuel Banda, Zambia Police speedily arrested and detained human rights activist Mr. Brebner Changala, FDD President Hon. Edith Nawakwi (in a sick condition), Lumezi MP Hon. Munir Zulu, and Mfuwe MP Hon. Maureen Mabonga, charging them with politically motivated cases of “hate speech” or “seditious practices against the State.” These arrests were orchestrated within two days.

This morning, Chief Inspector Chembe summoned CDP President Apostle Dan Pule, who hosted the UKA Prayers Service two weeks ago, to report at Police Headquarters at 11:00 hrs to respond to investigation questions and had consequently been arrested at Woodland Police Station. Our former PF SG, Hon. Davies Mwila, is currently appearing before Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) officers for unknown investigations and may or may not be detained.

Tomorrow, on 30th May, 2024, my entire family has been given scheduled appointments to appear before DEC for investigations and interviews in a manner that looks politically designed as follows:
– By 09:30 to 10:30 – Charles Phiri
– By 10:30 to 11:30 – Chiyeso Lungu
– By 11:30 to 12:30 – Tasila Lungu
– By 12:30 to 14:00 – Esther Lungu, former First Lady

In other words, their plan is to keep me and my entire family the whole day at DEC with the same scheme of breaking and silencing me.

From plunging us into a hungry nation after selling our hard-earned food reserves and failing to “fix the economy” as passionately promised in 2021, this UPND failed regime is now after me, my family, and every citizen who is providing democratic checks and balances by throwing law enforcement agencies (LEAs) on us. Besides targeting to break and silence me, our opposition leaders, civil society advocates, church leaders, and scholars who are speaking for the people, this oppressive government of HH is not humanly shy to raise the flag of political persecution and police brutality.

As former President, I want to reaffirm and emphasize that there is no dead or living Zambian who will change the plan of God for this country. President Hakainde Hichilema must know that “Zambia is holy land for Jesus Christ, a Christian nation, our multicultural state and a constitutional democracy for equal citizens.” This I know and remain fully persuaded that “God will fight and defeat the UPND script to break and silence all divergent voices.”

I am a believer in true democracy and a defender of “One Zambia, One Nation.” As PF party leader and former President, I will continue preaching peace, love, unity, and freedom amidst this oppressive political environment. In a constitutional and democratic fashion, I know that freedom is coming for everyone once again. And an inclusive Zambia for all shall emerge again sooner or later!

May God bless Zambia.
Stay peaceful and safe!
H.E Dr Edgar Chagwa Lungu
Sixth President of Zambia
Patriotic Front Party President

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