IT’S hard to understand why a ruling party can think of planning evil against citizens using the very institutions that are supposed to protect them. But the Patriotic Front’s notable success was its notoriety. And the naughtiness has continued even when they have been reduced to an opposition party. How can rational human beings governing a country scheme to arrest and punish citizens over fictitious offences, simply because they exercised their rights? This is how Edgar Lungu and his PF ran this country – based on brutality.
Senior security officers have revealed to The Mast that apart from the arrest of President Hakainde Hichilema as promised by Edgar Lungu, while he campaigned on the Copperbelt, some traditional leaders, journalists and other citizens were going to be arrested had PF won the August 12, 2021 elections.
The sources revealed that Mast journalist Edwin Mbulo, News Diggers editor-in-chief Joseph Mwenda, Free Press Initiative (FPI) founder Joan Chirwa formerly a senior journalist at The Mast, Mongu’s Lloyd Kapusa and others were to be picked up soon after the elections.
“And to show a semblance of the rule of law and democracy, people like Gary Nkombo, Cornelius Mweetwa and other vocal senior UPND officials
were to be let free so that they put up a fruitless legal battle against the arrests to appease the donor community…Apart from yourself, Mr M’membe, one Joan Chirwa, Christopher Miti (based in Chipata), Ernest Chanda and a female journalist, a Ms Chakwe (Masuzyo) were all to be detained under seditious laws,” say the sources. “…All the people we have talked of were also to be arrested in August, 2021 in some early hours as soon as Edgar Lungu was declared winner. The arrests were to be carried out at around 03:00 hours and police officers were monitoring yours and their movements. Mr Mbulo and all your fellows including now President Hichilema you are lucky that Lungu lost. Or we would be talking of a sad news now and nothing or no one was going to do anything. It was well planned and the judges were already picked to pass your verdict. Sadly, it would have been a life sentence or worse.”
These are interesting revelations from the security wings, though not surprising.
It was known from the time Edgar was campaigning between November 2014 and January 2015 that his would be a ruthless government. Edgar promised to sort out all his political enemies, real or perceived – that he would fall on them like a tonne of bricks.
It was under Edgar’s reign that a sitting Director of Public Prosecutions, Mutembo Nchito, was bundled and put on a vehicle and driven to Chongwe on tramped up charges. This was all in their quest to humiliate him. Later, they constituted a kangaroo tribunal against him, literally putting an impala in a court of hungry lions. And the outcome of that sham tribunal is well known.
And what the security officers have revealed confirm what was happening in our police and justice system under Edgar. They had lined up corrupt lawyers and pliant judges who were handling political cases. And the verdicts were pre-determined. This impunity soon enough became a norm at party and State level.
As Louis Brandeis warned, “Crime is contagious. If the government becomes a lawbreaker, it breeds contempt for law; it invites every man to become a law unto himself; it invites anarchy.”
For example, the closure of The Post was predetermined – they knew which police officers to use, which liquidator to appoint and the judge to handle the matter. A typical ‘Your wish is my command’ way to doing things!
Otherwise, how else could one explain the arrogance coming from some lawyers and those infamous ex parte consent judgments? It all explains the criminality they had specialised in.
This and many other issues justify calls for immediate and thorough judicial reforms.
Equally, we have lawyers who masquerade as such, yet they are outright criminals using the law. Justice must prevail on all those who perpetrated the art of lawfare.
As Learned Hand put it, “If we are to keep our democracy, there must be one commandment: Thou shalt not ration justice.”
Memories of the gassing of citizens which took place under PF are still fresh. The must be logical closure to these issues. Remember Geoffrey Bwalya Mwamba claimed to know the culprits?
That the PF didn’t make it on August 12 is a relief, considering what the nation is uncovering!
In Proverbs 28:1 we are told, “The wicked flee though no one pursues, but the righteous are as bold as a lion.”
From the PF nightmare, we must never allow elected public officials to trample on citizens’ rights and freedoms.
But as Benjamin Franklin observed, “Justice will not be served until those who are unaffected are as outraged as those who are.”
We must defend our Constitution and fight any tendencies leading to impunity because as John Adams advised, “It is more important that innocence be protected than it is that guilt be punished, for, guilt and crimes are so frequent in this world that they cannot all be punished.”