UPND President Hakainde Hichilema has revealed that over 2,000 UPND members are in police detention in various police stations across the country.
And Mr Hichilema has maintained that President Edgar Lungu was not legitimately elected as Head of State in the August 11th polls.
Speaking during a news conference at his residence today, Mr Hichilema disclosed that police are holding over 2,000 UPND members for various trumped up charges in the aftermath of the August 11 elections.
He said his party is sending more lawyers everywhere to represent its detained members and that their detentions are attracting huge bail amounts.
Mr Hichilema claimed that the idea is to break the UPND and eventually create a one party state in Zambia.
He said his and Vice President Geoffrey Mwamba recent arrest is part of the grand plan to silence the opposition into oblivion.
Mr Hichilema said he does not understand why the state refused to allow him and Mr Mwamba to visit detained party members at Kamfinsa state prison.
“We were not allowed to visit our members in prison. We were kept waiting for more than three hours, everyone was walking but it is only the two us that were not allowed to go in. What kind of government refuses to allow its detained citizens the right to visitation?
Mr Hichilema also charged that the two counts they were charged with by the Luanshya Magistrate Court are laughable.
“We were charged with illegal assembly and seditious practices in Luanshya. As you know, on our way back from Kamfinsa, we stop over to greet people that recognised us and wanted to greet us. Now if it is a crime to greet people on the streets then let it be so,” Mr Hichilema said.
“They have also charged us with seditious practices saying that we were telling people in Kitwe not to recognise Edgar Lungu as President. How dull can somebody be to charge us with seditious practices when we are publicly in court saying Lungu you stole our victory. The papers are in court,” Mr Hichilema said.
I hear he is promising to create 1 million jobs. That is not possible, I am a business man, I am an Economist. That is why Zambians voted for me. Structurally we don’t have an economy. The economy is shrinking, so how can Edgar Lungu even start dreaming of creating jobs?”
He also stated that the UPND petition challenging President Lungu’s victory is still alive and that the Courts will hear the matter on November 23rd 2016.
“We have been given a date by the courts and the matter is still very much alive. So what seditious practices are they talking about? That is what happens when one is making decisions whilst drunk. hear he has now upgrade the quality of his beer.”
And Mr Hichilema has maintained that the UPND will never recognise President Lungu as a dully elected President.
No amount of Institutionalised intimidation using Police arrests will make us recognise a President who the courts of law have never declared as duly elected and whose election is still a major source of unresolved legal scrutiny and much controversy.
“For us to pursue such legal avenues arises from the fact that we have a fundamental right to be heard which right is enshrined in our constitution. This right was denied us. To therefore suggest that our resolve is egocentric driven, is not only fundamentally flawed, but preposterous and totally ill-conceived and mischievous,” Mr Hichilema said.
“To Lungu, we are telling you that we don’t recognise you as a dully elected president. I won the election and Lungu knows that fact.”
He charged that President Lungu has misgoverned the country to an extent that there is nothing to be proud of happening in the country.
“I hear some people say we need to be proud of Zambia. You don’t have a country to be proud of. You have Chief thugs like Edgar Lungu and Kaizer Zulu running the country. Somebody on Sunday goes to Church and says he is a Christian and Fr Chilinda and Joshua Banda will be there praying for him, praying for someone who goes out there to batter people. Edgar and Kaizer are two people who are illegal in their offices and that is why they are behaving like this.”
Mr Hichilema also predicted that Zambia is headed for troubled times.
“I am not a story teller, things will be tough in this country. I hear he is promising to create 1 million jobs. That is not possible, I am a business man, I am an Economist. That is why Zambians voted for me. Structurally we don’t have an economy. The economy is shrinking, so how can Edgar Lungu even start dreaming of creating jobs?”