Police officers push Zambezi West Member of Parliament Charles Kakoma out of the Lusaka Central Police Station
FILE: Police officers push Zambezi West Member of Parliament Charles Kakoma out of the Lusaka Central Police Station

Stella Libongani was the first female Inspector General of Police in Zambia. Unfortunately her tenure was marred with total disregard to the rule of law and was such a disgrace to Zambians in general and the women folk in particular.

Stella presided over a brutal and most ferocious Police Force in the history of this country. This assertion pre-dates the colonial Police Force. It was under Stella that we witnessed unprecedented constriction of democratic space for opposition parties. It was under Stella that Police tear gassed and mercilessly beat up innocent people for simply wanting to express their democratic rights. It was under Stella that the Public Order Act was indiscriminately abused by the Police to deny permits to opposition Parties.

To put it plainly, Stella and her colleagues at the Police Service sold off to the politicians. The allowed themselves to dance to the songs of their appointing authority. They did not care whether instructions they received from their masters were legal or not. When asked to jump, Stella and her cohorts asked, “how high?”. They traded their professionalism at the alter of expedience. Never let a politician grant you a favour, they will always want to control you for ever said a legendary musician. Stella is no longer useful to powers that be and they have decided to shunt her into the Foreign Service, a place the PF uses to dump failed functionaries.

Stella’s lesson is very important. It is a timely warning to all those senior public servants that chose to obey their masters instead of following laid down procedure. Take for instance the conduct of the Zambia National Broadcasting Cooperation? What is happening there is absurd to say the least. Stella is a young woman and we hope her time in Canada, a developed democracy will teach her a thing or two. She will learn that a Police Service can be professional, apolitical and impartial. She will hopefully also learn that businesses thrive where people feel secure and protected by the police. A professional Police Service can be a catalyst to development, job creation and economic emancipation. The reverse is also true, as we have seen in the last 4 years of PF rule with its repressive and brutal Police Force. Every person deserves a second chance and we wish this appointment to Canada will help reform Stella.

Finally, may I take this opportunity to congratulate the new Inspector General of Police, Mr.Kakoma Kangaja. We look forward to working with you and as always, I want to reaffirm our unflinching commitment to working within the prescribed Laws of the Republic of Zambia. My humble advice to you is that you are the Inspector General of the Zambia Police Service and not the PF Party and as such the public will expect nothing less but professionalism in the execution of you duties. I wish you well.

Charles Kakoma

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12 COMMENTS

    • Is Kakoma Kangaja a cousin to Kakoma Charles? Why start praising him even before his wife brew him beer?

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    • Somebody promotion? It is actually a demotion naimwe; Surely which school did you go to? As an ambassador, Libongani will be reporting to the Perm. Sec. in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. As an IG she used to report to president.

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    • Timely warning…we all just have to do that which is right. Can you imagine if Kambwili told Doctors how to treat patients? But he tell znbc what to say….

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  1. you never said this while she wa in power; this is cowardice. Face your enemies head on if you have a pair. That is all I am saying.

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  2. Stella Libongani – what a terrible legacy you have left. Writing about his arrest and subsquent detention in Chongwe, this is what the DPP Mutembo Nchito wrote: “The Inspector General of Police called me and told me to present myself to her officers who had come to arrest me. When I told her that I had a High Court order quashing the arrest warrant from the Chongwe magistrate, she told me that she would call back as she wanted to consult her superiors. She then called back and told me that THE POLICE WOULD NOT BE OBEYING THE HIGH COURT ORDER and were going ahead to arrest me….”. Rule of law???
    What a terrible legacy!

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  3. But what do you expect when her appointment was based on relationship and not competence? There are still so many such relationship based appointments in the civil service and parastatals! COOs in some parastatals have been appointed not because they have the competences but because they have special relationships with Ministers! In this country these things are done without any shame. That’s why our country is struggling to develop!

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  4. This is Africa where cadrism is rewarded with a job as Inspector General of Police or a Post in the Foreign service. How I sometimes wish the British had not left cause clearly we are incapable of governing ourselves. Fighting for independence from a white man only to be subjugated by a black one. We even celebrate ati we are free but police teargas you because you are an opposition leader and invade a radio station when you want to speak. Power Failure (PF)!!!!

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