THE Drug Enforcement Commission has warned that people impersonating DEC officers and are conducting illegal drug searches in Eastern Province will be dealt with.
In a statement, DEC deputy public relations officer Mwenge Mumba stated that it had come to the attention of the Commission that there were criminals in Eastern Province impersonating DEC officers by visiting people in the night and pretending to be conducting illegal drug searches with an intention to steal from them.
“We also wish to remind members of the public that impersonation of a DEC officer is a criminal offence under the Penal Code as well as the Narcotic and Psychotropic Substances Act, Cap 87 and 96 of the Laws of Zambia respectively. Those found to be behind these reported incidences shall be dealt with in accordance with the Law. Members of the public are further requested to always demand for identification card whenever they are approached by any person purporting to be a law enforcement officer. DEC officers always
present their identification cards and request any person being searched to identify an officer before proceeding with any search,” he stated.
Mulenga stated that DEC remains committed to the values of integrity, professionalism, patriotism and accountability among others which were inculcated in officers with a policy of zero tolerance towards any misconduct.
Last week police in Nyimba instituted investigations into the matter where a group of criminals who pose as Drug Enforcement
officers was robbing people under the pretext that they search for drugs.
Eastern Province police commissioner Luckson Sakala said the criminals who were always armed move in people’s homes in the night.
Sakala said this following the latest incident where a woman of Ukosi village in chief Ndake’s area was robbed of K1,870 by unknown people who impersonated DEC officers on Saturday night.
He said the victim, Lizzy Zulu, told police that the criminals posed as DEC officers and started searching for drugs but ended up stealing
“These criminals who were two, stormed Zulu’s house around 23:00 hours on Saturday. They told her that they were DEC officers who were looking for illegal drugs but they ended up stealing the money from her. She told the police that these people were armed with a gun which looked like an air gun,” Sakala said.
He said this could be the fifth or fourth incident to have occurred in Nyimba district.