Speaker directs Mwiimbu to respond to Lungu’s “Zambians will rise” statement

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Zambia’s National Assembly Speaker, Nelly Mutti, has directed the Minister of Home Affairs and Internal Security Jack Mwiimbu to address the house next week regarding former president Edgar Lungu statement suggesting that Zambians may rise and remove President Hakainde Hichilema from power before 2026.

The directive follows a matter of urgent public importance raised by Bweengwa member of parliament, Kasauta Michelo, who expressed concern about Lungu’s recent statement.

On Tuesday, an angry and extremely agitated Lungu blasted the Zambia Police Police Service accusing them of treating him badly after he went to visit PF officials detained at Kabwata Police Station.

After a minor altercation with officers, Lungu suggested the conduct of the Zambia Police Service may cause citizens to rise and remove President Hichilema from power before 2026.

Michelo argued that the remarks could potentially incite unrest and urged the government to clarify its position.

Lungu’s remarks have not only bothered the Bweengwa MP but several other stakeholders have raised concern including former vice president Nevers Mumba, the UPND and fellow opposition leader Wynter Kabimba.

Michelo further argued that while Lungu may be immune from prosecution for potential offenses committed during his presidency, his recent actions could warrant legal action.

“I believe the offences which Mr Edgar
Chagwa Lungu committed during the time he was ruling or when he was in power, we know quite alright that he may not be tried,” Michelo said.

“But the offences he committed after he has relinquished his power, I believe that he can still be tried, arrested, because otherwise at the rate he is moving, he may start shooting people saying he
has immunity and can go scot-
free.”

Michelo called for the Minister of Home Affairs to inform the nation about the government’s stance on the matter and any potential course of action.

The Minister of Home Affairs who was absent during the initial discussion is expected to deliver a ministerial statement next week, addressing the concerns raised and outlining the government’s position on Lungu’s comments.

Meanwhile, the police service issued a statement through spokesperson Rae Hamoonga who said the statement made by Lungu, indicating that “people will rise,” was under careful scrutiny.

This put the ECL camp on defence as Lungu’s sympathisers flocked his house based on rumors that he was going to be arrested.

However, the police have not issued any notice of arrest on the former President.

Kalemba February 29, 2024

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