(By Edwin Mbulo in Sesheke)
WE are not shocked that the PF under President Edgar Lungu has graduated to be the most violent party ever to rule Zambia, says NDC vice-president Josephs Akafumba.
Akafumba says the PF does not mind seeing corpses just for them to win a parliamentary seat.
Meanwhile, a laptop belonging to Prime TV journalist Lloyd Kapusa was stolen after police and suspected PF cadres smashed a vehicle he had used to cover the UPND in Maondo’s Katongo area where police used live ammunition to disperse people attending Hakainde Hichilema’s meeting on Friday.
At the same time a female Zambia Daily Mail journalist was physically harassed by police who deleted pictures from her digital camera.
In an interview, Akafumba – a prominent lawyer – said the use of live ammunition against unarmed citizens was regrettable.
“We are deeply saddened but not shocked at the levels of violence perpetrated by the PF supported by the police. We are not shocked that the PF under President Edgar Lungu has graduated to be the most violent party to have ever ruled this country,” he said.
Akafumba said it was also regrettable that the government could use live ammunition against its own citizens for turning up to hear an opposition leader campaign.
The former Southern Province PF chairman said it was now clear that the PF does not mind killing Zambians.
“The violence shown in Sesheke is a clear indication that the PF does not mind killing Zambians in order to win an election. They don’t mind seeing voters going to a polling station clad in Plaster of Paris or walking on clutches just in order to win a parliamentary seat,” he said. “They don’t mind seeing corpses just for them to win the Sesheke parliamentary seat. This is why dialogue is so necessary because if this process does not succeed, we will see a lot of Zambians dying at the hands of the police in 2021. There was no need for the police to use live ammunition on the people of Sesheke on Friday and Saturday.”
Akafumba added that Zambia needs peace and not strife.
He further indicated that in Chinsali, the PF made sure that NDC consultant Chishimba Kambwili did not address a radio programme by shutting down power to the station which also affected the hospital and a market.
“They intimidated the radio station not to allow Kambwili on air. But after realising that this was not working and that the radio station had gone ahead to allow the NDC consultant, power was cut 10 minutes into the programme and Zesco officials vanished from the station,” Akafumba said. “The power shutdown affected patients at a hospital putting their lives in an added danger.”
Akafumba said in Chifunabuli, the NDC delegation was told that the PF had scheduled meetings from Monday to Friday and that the NDC could not hold any meetings.
“We ended up complaining to the ECZ public relations officer Margaret Chimanse,” he said. “That is why I say that if we don’t dialogue we will send this country into anarchy and the major culprit is the PF. I fear for 2021,” he said.
And a police source has revealed that Kapusa had his laptop stolen by either police or PF thugs from Kanyama who attacked the UPND team in Katongo’s Maondo ward on Friday.
“Apart from Kapusa, a Zambia Daily Mail woman journalist had her arm twisted behind her back and forced to delete pictures from her camera. I understand Kapusa is afraid of reporting the matter to the police because he is being sought so that he can delete some footage of the attack on the UPND leader on Friday,” said the police source.
But the ECZ has indicated that despite the reported incidents of electoral violence, the Sesheke by-election would go ahead tomorrow, February 12.