The Public Protector Caroline Sokoni has expressed deep concern over the growing instances of unlawful impounding of motor vehicles by some members of the Zambia Police Service.
Sokoni highlighted that the impounding of vehicles has surged, even in cases where the committed offense does not warrant such action under the law.
“The act by traffic police officers is obstructing the government’s fight against maladministration and corruption when law enforcement officers must not be the ones who cause these vices to flourish,” Sokoni said through a statement.
She further pointed out that while the majority of the public is law-abiding and willing to pay fines, some traffic police officers seem to prefer impounding vehicles as a means to solicit bribes from inconvenienced motorists.
Sokoni emphasized that such actions tarnish the image of the Zambia Police Service and hinder the government’s efforts to combat maladministration and corruption.
Asserting the role of the Office of the Public Protector, Sokoni declared, “We will not allow a few officers under the Traffic Department to dent the image of the Zambia Police Service due to their failure to follow the laid-down procedures when carrying out their duties.”
She urged traffic officers to be professional and avoid procedural improprieties in the impounding of vehicles.
The Public Protector also called on victims of questionable impoundings to report incidents by obtaining the name and service number of the police officers and the police station manning the roadblock.
By Moses Makwaya
Kalemba January 4, 2023