HOME affairs minister Steven Kampyongo has urged Zambians to drink responsibly during this year’s festive season.
And Kampyongo has warned criminals planning to cash in during the merry making season that they will face the wrath of the law.
Speaking to journalists after a closed door engagement with malls and public space owners at Protea Hotel – Arcades in Lusaka yesterday, Kampyongo said there was need to put measures to stop illegalities during the festive period.
He said his ministry was engaging various stakeholders to ensure security in the country and to encourage people to drink responsibly.
“Yes, alcohol is to be consumed but they should consume alcohol responsibly and ensure that it doesn’t get them into trouble. And in the same talking, I want to warn those who are thinking that this is the time to cash in through stealing from innocent citizen that our men and women will be on the ground. So, just as they want to enjoy the routes of their wrong activities, we shall be within them, we shall keep them where they want to be, instead of them causing any disturbances. So, we wish the Zambia people a happy festive period and merry Christmas,” he said.
Kampyongo said he had reached consensus with property owners who were operating public spaces and hotels to strike a security balance for the safety of people they were serving.
He said the security engagement would continue to ensure that peace was not disturbed in the country.
“We have agreed on the number of measure that will be taken and we just want to assure the members of the public that innocent citizens who want to enjoy their freedom during this period that government, through its security agencies, will be on the ground to ensure that their lives are not disturbed and their activities are not disturbed by lawless individuals,” Kampyongo said.
He further warned people keeping firearms without regiment ownership that they would have themselves to blame for possession if illegal weapon.
“We have a programme of silencing a gun by June, 2020 and we as a nation…. Yes, we have had some firearms surrendered and destroyed but that hasn’t wiped out firearms. And so with the recent amnesty that we have had of some people with fire arms in different circumstances, we are saying after the amnesty, there will be cleanup operations,” said Kampyongo.
“The law is quite clear for those who want to move with anything that is described as an offensive weapon. It doesn’t matter who owns it; whether political cadre or non-political cadre. Because if it is meant to harm people, then it is our concern.”
And Zambia Property Owners Association president Schak Dudhia said he would consistently dialogue in managing the security situation in the country.