The Zambia Police has warned members of the public to stop spreading false information or risk being arrested as doing so is an offence.
In a statement issued to the media by Police Spokesperson Charity Munanga said the false rumors being spread by some members of the public is creating anxiety among communities and being take advantage of by criminals who are looting shops.
She all official statements regarding the ritual murders will be issued by relevant authorities.
“The Zambia Police Service is concerned with the number of speculations going on social media about the ritual murders. The information has unfortunately been taken advantage of by criminals who have been looting shops belonging to both foreign nationals and Zambians.
“All the official statements will be issued by the relevant authorities such as the Police or the Ministry of Home Affairs. All those spreading false rumors that are creating anxiety or fear in members of the public are alarming the Nation and that is an offence. The Zambia Police will
therefore not hesitate to arrest such people regardless of the medium they are using,” she said.
She also provided an update on the number of people who have died in xenophobic attacks
“The official number of people who have died from the time the looting started is two. These are the ones who were burnt to death on 18th April 2016 in Kanyama compound. The false statements going round about the use of chloroform by the ritual killers is not coming from the Police. So far no nurse has been arrested, no baby or human body parts were found in any fridge belonging to any foreign national. These statements are coming from people with criminal minds to create alarm among the members of the public and justify their criminality.
“We are appealing to the members of the public not to believe any statement they see on social media which is not confirmed by the Police. They should also be aware of statements that are falsely attributed to the police andverify such with us. Members of the public with queries should direct them to the Police Public Relations officer on 0975715476 or the Police emergence
She added “We would also like to appeal to all the people whose shops have been lootedto report so that we can ascertain the value of the property that has been lost so far.
We still want to reassure members of the public that the police are doing everything possible to protect lives and property. Police officers have been deployed to all compounds in Lusaka to handle the situation. Members of the public should also restrain their family members from getting involved in these looting as they risk being arrested and taken to court.”