(By Charles Tembo in Mpongwe)
STATE and Intelligence officers blocked access roads leading to a venue where Democratic Party president Harry Kalaba was supposed to hold a meeting in Mpongwe on Sunday.
Kalaba, who is on the Copperbelt, held a series of meetings in Ndola and Kitwe on Saturday.
On Sunday, Kalaba paid a courtesy call on chief Malembeka of the Lamba speaking people in Mpongwe.
While attending service at Ibenga Union Baptist Church, plain-clothed officers surrounded the church building.
After the service, officers gathered around the Church while mini-road blocks along the Mpongwe road were made.
The officers then blocked the access way behind chief Malembeka’s palace where Kalaba was to interact with the people.
However, Kalaba eluded the police and left Mpongwe.
Meanwhile, Kalaba asked Union Baptist Church to pray for leaders.
“I have been praying and I will continue to pray. We ask God to increase my territory,” said Kalaba.
Earlier, the former foreign affairs complained that farmers in Mpongwe were still waiting for their money from the Food Reserve Agency (FRA).
“It is quite sad that our farmers here are still waiting for their payments for last year. The distribution of inputs is late and farmers are not paid on time. Surely, is this good to our farmers?” asked Kalaba.
And Copperbelt police commissioner Charity Katanga said the police had no policy to stop anyone from attending a church service.
“Let me make it clear; there is no policy from my command to stop anyone from attending church. We did not know that Mr Kalaba is in Luanshya and even attending church. So, when you see officers, they claim they want to be blocked. No! Remember (that) even police officers go to church; we worship also! The same churches they come to, officers also go to church and they are members,” explained Katanga.
“Let us not be spreading lies that police want to block people. How can we block people who come to worship? Let us not be a people of lies.”