I COULD have been dead by now if I had not left Zambia because those that were involved in corruption were determined to take me out, says Gregory Chifire.
In a statement, Chifire, the exiled human rights activist, said there were a lot of people that were still hurting because of what those in the PF regime of Edgar Lungu did to them, and he was one of them.
He said the PF government was a regime from hell.
“That is why I wholeheartedly support calls for the setting up of a formal platform such as a truth and reconciliation commission where those that were wronged and those that committed wrongs would give the side of their stories so that we could move forward as a unified nation without pretence,” Chifire said. “Those that did wrong things to us must own up, come forward and seek forgiveness with sincerity.”
He recalled that there were a lot of atrocities that took place under the PF government such as extra judicial killings, arson cases and gassing of citizens and lives were lost.
“We cannot just pretend that nothing happened. It is this pretence that may lead to the repeat of these heinous acts,” he said. “It wasn’t easy to stay away from lawful custody. I regret with all my heart. I suffered tremendous trauma. I could not attend to family matters. My son was born in my absence. Another son was in hospital. I wasn’t there. I couldn’t attend funerals of close relatives and friends. It has really been a torture.”
Chifire said he knows that many do not understand what he went through and what transpired, but now was time to speak up.
He said it was a very painful decision to leave Zambia but he had to make a choice between saving his life and presenting himself to those that wanted to eliminate him on a silver platter.
“Some of us were not free to move in some parts of Zambia because PF cadres were hunting us down. Our phones were tapped by chola boys of a known minister, now former. A ransom was put on my head. Those criminals who operated at Intercity and that minister’s boys can relate to this story. I know all of them. On many occasions they tried to bribe a friend who was a member of PF to set a trap on me with a promise of rewarding him with huge government contracts, but he refused. They wanted me dead,” he said. “Ask Mrs Mumbi Phiri, we spoke about one planned attack on me by known criminals from Intercity. She offered me and my family refuge at her house, though I didn’t take the offer. I had to go into hiding. I had my movements restricted for fear of falling into the hands of corrupt criminals. Going to jail meant that I was going to give access to my body by those who were hunting me down. To be honest, even now, these criminals have not stopped hunting for those they believe contributed to their downfall and may perhaps be in possession of pieces of evidence that may incriminate them. They are actually more wounded now than before for losing power.”
Chifire said the political criminals would do anything to avoid going to jail, including silencing those they feel would speak.