IRATE taxi drivers in Kitwe yesterday protested over the death of their colleague who died after he was allegedly beaten by the police while in custody.
The taxi drivers who were angered by police action to go to the funeral house of their deceased colleague, Baron Mubanga in Kwacha Township and fire teargas canister, mobilized soon after leaving Kitwe Central Hospital mortuary around 12:00 hours and blocked Kwacha Road with logs disturbing flow of traffic.
Some taxi drivers who sought anonymity accused the police of being behind the death of their colleague who they claimed was arrested and beaten for failing to produce a driving license.
Uncle to the deceased driver, Martin Mulenga confirmed that Mr Mubanga died on Saturday morning, days after being beating by the police.
Mr Mulenga said that the deceased was arrested by traffic police officers for failing to produce an original driver’s license.
He said that Mr Mubanga tried to explain to the officers that he forgot the license at home and that he only had a photocopy of the license but officers decided to arrest him.
Mr Mulenga complained that the police did not respect the funeral of the deceased by walking around the funeral house with riot gears and throwing tear gas and live annunciations at the funeral house.
“They were a lot of people at the funeral house, they were people with disabilities and children but how does a qualified officer throw tear gas at funeral house,” Mr Mulenga said.
And mother to the deceased Mary Kasonka said his son started complaining of body pains and bleeding too much after he was released from police custody.
Ms Kasonka said that her son was then taken to Kitwe Central Hospital
(KCH) where he was given some injections.
She said that the deceased continued to bleed and complain of body pains and was again taken to KCH where he was readmitted until last Saturday when he died.
“The law says if a person dies within six months after being beaten they person who beat him becomes responsible for the death and in this case my son died a week after being beaten and the police should be held responsible for my son’s death,” Ms Kasonka said.
She said that her son died a sad death which would have been avoided by the police if they were professional in handling the case.