Part of the Press Statement by Seven Civil society organisations
Both in Livingstone and Mpongwe, the electoral code of conduct was breached and the police remained akimbo when such things were happening. The police continue to be reactive in the face of electoral violence rather than being proactive. As result of their laisser-faire approach, Zambia has continued to lose lives during elections. Recent incidences include Rufunsa and now Livingstone. The police have failed to really exhibit professional conduct during the elections. In most cases they themselves act as agents of electoral violence as opposed to peacekeepers during such time. To hide their inefficiencies, the Police have in the past blamed political parties and advertently ban political party rallies and gatherings.
we ask them to exercise the greatest respect for human rights and resist the temptation of turning the Police Service into a unit similar to the Gestapo that was under the NAZI in Germany
We would, at this point, like to express our heartfelt condolences to the Patriotic Front (PF) and the late Mr. Chanda’s family of Monze on his untimely death in Livingstone while involved in electoral campaigns for the Livingstone Central parliamentary by-election. The death of Mr. Chanda who was PF Monze District Chairperson is highly regrettable and unfortunate. The death is also coming at the time when the police command in Lusaka announced that an additional 300 police officers had been deployed to the area.
- What were those police officers doing in Livingstone if it is not to protect property and human life?
- Where were they when political party cadres where busy killing each other?
- How did the late PF District Chairperson for Monze and his friends find themselves near the UPND camp and what was the motive behind their going to the UPND camp?
- Why didn’t the Police, man the buffer Zone between the two political party camps so as not to allow stray cadres into each other’s camps taking into account that police are aware of the endemic political intolerance among political parties?
Had the police been proactive, Mr. Chanda’s life would have been saved. We, therefore, expect the police to use their professional skills and to conduct thorough investigations in the murder of Mr. Chanda and bring the real culprits to account. We cannot accept the loss of life on account of elections. It is unacceptable and must be rejected by all patriotic Zambians. It is a foreign phenomenon which should not be allowed to grow its roots in our peaceful country.
The nation is still remembers how dramatic the Rufunsa incident was and how police at the directive of political leadership, went on rampage arresting innocent people who were later released.
As civil society organisations, we have noted with concern that police have not been acting professionally whenever handling electoral related issues. There has been a tendency by police to act high handedly whenever dealing with opposition political parties while those in power tend to get away with anything. Further, the police have been using emotions and political directives to carry out their investigations rather than applying their professional acumen. As the police go on with their investigations, we ask them to exercise the greatest respect for human rights and resist the temptation of turning the Police Service into a unit similar to the Gestapo that was under the NAZI in Germany. The Gestapo methods cannot work in a country like Zambia and those in charge of the Police must go back to their history books and learn the consequences of the same methods Hitler employed.
The tendency by the police to follow political directives blindly and their failure to bring perpetrators of violence to account has led them to lose confidence in the eyes of the public. The nation is still remembers how dramatic the Rufunsa incident was and how police at the directive of political leadership, went on rampage arresting innocent people who were later released. To date the perpetrators of this violence are not yet known. . This is really a sad development in the democratic growth of our country. Since the Police have agreed to be used as tools to catch and persecute opponents of the party in power, they have rendered themselves irrelevant in the eyes of other stakeholders as they now feel that the institution is applying double standards and selective justice.
Zambia Centre for inter-party dialogue(ZCID)
Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI)
Anti-Voter Apathy Iniative (AVAP)
Foundation for Democratic Process(FODEP)
Southern African Centre for Constructive Resolution of Disputes(SACCORD)
Operation Young Vote(OYV)
You just put the blame on the police! Even if the PF had trespassed into UPNDS territory,did that guarantee the killing? THINK
These CSO chaps also are low lifers, we dont need cops to act as a barrier between two parties, we dont need this kind of thinking it will only promote arnachy. we as zambians we have to learn to be at peace with one another…learn to understand and accommodate each other…the blame game is way over..! grow up you so called CSOs
You just can’t blame the police but UPND as well
i would like the police to answer those 4 questions….and why do journalists not ask these same questions to people like Lungu
In chewa, there is a saying that “Oletselele ndeo savula malaya” meaning if you see someone who is to trying to stop a fight taking off their shirt, just know that they are not neutral. Ba CSO, someone lost his life and you are busy blaming the police. Do you think the police can guard every house/building, individual or vehicle in livingstone at teh same time? Find the perpetrators of this heinous crime and bring them to book. Your level of analysis shows that you have beenn reading a lot of ZWD and you believe every story they write. Please think and see the bigger picture; what you are seeing is just a tip of the icberg. You can go to hell with your half hearted message of condolences.
ke ke ke ke ke ke, Bandawe in this case ndani anavula malaya? Nice saying.
Das….3K2M, I think some people are taking us for granted and think that we were born yesterday. As far as I am concerned, NGO’s, Churches, newspapers (including the on-line ones) etc are supposed to be non-partisan and in such critical situations like elections, they are supposed to help as make informed decisions, but if you watch them very carefully, you’ll notice that most of them are heavily compromised. But they want to come out as if they are very clean and they stand with the vulnerable people.
Policemen cant be blamed for this incident even themselves they also fear to die. They were not employment to die for unproductive fight. Just remember what happened in Mufumbwe 2010 by-elections police tried their best but it was them who were injured most and it was not reported so get facts before issuing press statements
ZAMBIA POLICE SERVICE IS NOW PF POLICE. THERE IS NO LONGER ANY TRACE OF PROFESSIONALISM IN THE MANNER IN WHICH POLICE DISCHARGE THEIR DUTY. POLICE THINKS THAT SATA IS A SMALL GOD. SATA IS JUST A MARE HUMAN BEING LIKE YOU AND ME. THERE IS NOTHING SPECIAL ABOUT SATA. SO POLICE SHOULD DO THEIR WORK DILIGENTLY WITHOUT HAVING ANY FEAR FOR SATA. BE PROFESSIONAL IN YOUR CONDUCT AND DISCHARGE OF YOUR DUTIES. PF KILLED THEIR OWN FRIEND, AND NOW YOU WANT TO ACCUSE UPND JUST BECAUSE YOU ARE JEALOUS OF UPND AND FEAR THAT THEY WILL SOON KICK YOU OUT OF POWER. SHAME ON YOU PF. SHAME ON GRANDFATHER SATA.
At last someone is asking the right questions not the ever drunk PF home affairs minister’s hallucinations in parliament
As usual it is the Zambian BLAME GAME from people and organs who are supposed to be non-partisan eg. Churches, Blogs , bloggers alike before full detatils are given. The press has not yet told us the pertinent circustances leading to the tragedy for us to make conclusions or condemnation of any one including the Police and the parties involved. Information such as the exact location (township, compound) not just in Livingstone, how far was it from the road (kilo/metres), was it on the road or not, how far where the Police (were they present or not) are essential. Was the UPND camp wholly secluded or house along the road which is accessible to the public (PF included) or not, or did PF cadres tress pass UPND yard or not? LT please report factually or get full report from the Zambia Police.
CSO u think so low and side wth upnd. th police took the measures after assessing the situation bt u stood up strongly and condemned them. did u want them to be guarding each and evry individual.dont blem them they did wht they cud. infact u made the situation like that by opening ur mouths whn non of u went there to assess the situa. useless NGO’s. keep u mouths shut.th que’s u hv asked shows low u hv reduced urselves. didnt u hear what they said. u hv failed to blem upnd and u ar genaralising.
The CSO is full of dull people, how can you have a buffer zone in a constituency? Do you mean some areas are out of bounds for some political parties to carry out their campaigns?
It is not the job of the police to monitor all the citizens of any Zambian constituency even Livingstone. Do you want the police to arrest people on the assumption that anyone walking the streets during campaign period poses a danger to the peace of the nation? The police do not have the man power, even if they did, having 10,000 policemen and women on one constituency will be intimidating to the local population! The questions asked above are to shallow to come from a CSO, all political parties are supposed to have access to all the areas of the constituency even in stronghold areas of a rival party!
SK, efilanda umuntu ifi! You alone have given a more sound analysis and reasoning than the ZCID,YALI, AVAP, FODEP, SACCORAD & OYV above who just want to apportion the blame to Zambia Police and not blame the killers themselves. It is amazing, how a group of CSOs as they call themselves can fail to show civic leadership on this matter. Are we in a war zone for police to be creating buffer zones between warring parties? What a foolish way of looking at the violence that lead to a loss of human life. All parties must campaign and be allowed to be everywhere in the constituency without fear of intimidation or violence.
The CSO’s should be educating people on the need for peaceful elections and ways of avoiding confrontations with rival parties, the blame game on the police just highlights their failures. The police have nothing to do with the elections, their job is to maintain law and order, the CSO’s idea of buffer zones should have been raised with ECZ but I doubt if it can be allowed because it is undemocratic. We should encourage integration not segregation because after the elections how do you expect people to tolerate each after you had introduced an artificial barrier between them? The CSO’s need to clean up their act and talk about real facts not assumptions or accusations without any evidence which just excite the masses to commit criminal acts.
too many small minds blogging.Why don’t the police answer the questions tht have been asked or why can’t you people insulting CSO’s come up with an answer.The PF police failed to stop the PF cadres from going into the UPND camp.
Blog-a-shere is for everyone. You sound like a guy with chicken IQ.
Liam, did the police also fail to stop the UPND from hacking the strayed PF cadre to death? Your thinking, just like that of CSOs lack merit. The police are not able to provide security to each and every human being. The parties involved in political campaigns must be civil enough to each other rather than hacking each other. What stopped the UPND from making a citizens arrest on Chanda and taking him to the police station as responsible citizens rather than hacking to death their fellow human being though he be a member of PF? It is this kind of thinking or lack their of, that will create impunity for those always using violence as means to political agendas.
nice questions 2 pf police
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