LAWYER Elias Munshya stresses that the State knows the whereabouts of Milton and Pheluna Hatembo, who are said to have been abducted.
He said this in a live video on his Facebook page from Calgary city in Alberta, Canada on Monday.
The government and pro-PF media continue to present a view that the Choma-based siblings have been abducted.
The Hatembos had initiated court action in an ownership dispute over a farm in Kalomo with UPND leader Hakainde Hichilema.
After losing the matter in court, the duo has ‘disappeared’, for fear of being harassed by PF operatives, for refusing to appeal the matter.
Munshya dug deep into the Hatembos’ issue and why State agents are projecting it to be a big issue.
“They are simply inventing cases against Hakainde. They don’t just have a way of arresting him,” Munshya said. “Is it true that police officers in Zambia don’t know where the Hatembos are? The entire State in Zambia does not know where the Hatembos are!”
He said the State was trying to create a certain crisis by heightening the Hatembos topic.
“Bali pamano (they have something under the sleeves) and trying to use this issue to either foment civil unrest in our country…” he noted.
“But we’ll not sit idle! Why should you use an innocent duo to be fighting battles of this nature?”
Munshya added: “I refuse ukusumina (agreeing) that the State does not know where the Hatembos are.”
“No!” he protested. “What have the Hatembos become? They have become [Adamson] Mushala that the State cannot know where they are? They know! There is something more sinister that the State is trying to cook up. As citizens we say no to that.”
He also pointed out that Forum for Democracy and Development (FDD) leader Edith Nawakwi is not doing whatever she was doing because of her genuine concern for the Hatembos.
“We refuse ukweba ati ba (that Ms) Edith Nawakwi nomba batuletele icinfulunganya mu calo (now should bring chaos in the country),” Munshya said. “It’s okay for Nawakwi not to like Hichilema but what is not okay is for her to use levers of the State and innocent Hatembos to try to cook up a crime for Hichilema.”
He refused to buy the State’s narrative of abduction.
“There is no scandal here! There is no abduction or anything like that. This is all politically motivated, whose objective we already know,” Munshya noted. “The objective is to arrest Mr Hichilema and prevent him from standing [for the presidency this year]. That’s all it is!”
He, however, asked those who are fuelling the Hatembos’ story if they do not care about the peace of Zambia.
“Nico na Hichilema aliba bwino (it’s only that Hichilema is good-hearted). You think that abantu kuti basumina (people can agree) [where] you make up ifyabufi (lies) and abantu bakekale fye ati iyo mukwai (people simply sit by and say no) it’s okay?” Munshya said.
“If this country burns, nimwe tukalilila ba Nawakwi nabanenu (it’s you, Ms Nawakwi, we’ll apportion to, together with your friends).”
He continued, saying: “neco mwababelesesha aba Tonga nico (the reason you have taken advantage of Tongas is because) they are people of peace.”
“Kuti mwaleta uyo umulomo ku Kasama kuba Bemba mwapusuka mwebo (can you bring that wrangling in Bembaland in Kasama and you get away with it), nangu kwesu kuba Ushi mwaleta uyo umulomo mwapusuka (or in Ushi land where I hail from, you bring that wrangling and you get away from it)?” wondered Munshya.
“Mwalibatola aba Tonga nico bamutende (you’ve taken advantage of the Tongas because of their peaceful nature).”