THE problems which former Post Newspaper proprietor Fred M’membe and his wife Mutinta Mazoka are going through are non-political and they should not drag the name of President Edgar Lungu into their issues but concentrate on paying their debts, Patriotic Front (PF) chief executive officer (CEO) Davis Mwila has warned.
And Mr Mwila, who is former Home Affairs Minister and Chipili PF member of Parliament, warned Mr M’membe and his wife to immediately stop dragging the name of the Head of State into their business but deal with the liquidator of the Post Newspaper and other institutions which they owe money.
Mr Mwila was reacting to a statement which was recently issued by Mr M’membe accusing President Lungu of being after him following the arrest of his wife Mutinta.
“Fred M’membe and the wife owe DBZ and other institutions and that is the reason why a judgment was made in favour of DBZ and other institutions.
“…The liquidators have come in so that the money is recovered, so, failure to pay the money these problems will still continue,” Mr Mwila said.
He has since appealed to Mr M’membe and his wife to pay the money to the liquidator and other people whom they owed. “But as long as this issue of not paying the money is not sorted out, these problems will continue. “So, I would appeal to them that they pay the money and they should not drag the name of the President in their issues because the President Edgar Lungu is innocent,” he said.
Mr M’membe described the arrest of wife as inhuman and unacceptable done in bad faith.
“President Edgar Lungu and his agents ought to have known I was out of the country visiting the USA and Jamaica. The warrant to arrest me was, therefore, a farce. It was meant to enter, search, intimidate, harass and humiliate my family,” he said. Mr M’membe said the liquidation of The Post was supposed to be a civil issue, adding that using the police, intelligence officers and the entire state machinery, including State House, was unwarranted.
“It is me President Edgar Lungu is after.
He should have the patience to wait for a few more days,” Mr M’membe said.
Meanwhile, Government has described as “baseless and malicious” claims by former Post Newspapers Limited (in liquidation) editor-in-chief Fred M’membe that President Lungu is after him following the arrest of his wife Mutinta.
Chief government spokesperson Kampamba Mulenga said President Lungu is too busy implementing his campaign promises aimed at improving the welfare of Zambians and would, therefore, not waste time on Mr M’membe.
Ms Mulenga, who is Minister of Information and Broadcasting Services, said President Lungu respects the rule of law and would never abuse his authority to victimise Mr M’membe or his family using the police.
She was reacting to Mr M’membe’s allegation reported in a private tabloid last Saturday on the arrest of his wife by police.
On Wednesday, police went to Mr M’membe’s house on Nangwenya Road in Rhodes Park near Lusaka Showgrounds to effect an arrest but only found his wife Mutinta.
Mr M’membe is wanted by the police on an arrest warrant issued by a court for disobeying lawful orders to surrender all the assets of the Post Newspapers (in liquidation).
On Tuesday, the Lusaka Magistrates’ Court issued a warrant of arrest for Mr M’membe for failing to deliver to the provisional liquidator the real and personal property, books and documents under his custody or control being the properties, books and documents belonging to the Post Newspapers Limited (in liquidation).
But when police went to issue the warrant, Mrs M’membe allegedly turned violent and tore to pieces the warrant of arrest against her husband, who is reportedly out of the country.
She has since appeared in court for allegedly obstructing police in their duty and released on a K3,000 bail.
But Mr M’membe said in the tabloid story that President Lungu is after him.
But Ms Mulenga dismissed the allegation saying it is the provisional liquidator, Mr M’membe’s former employees and taxpayers who are after their money from him.
She said President Lungu respects the separation of powers and would never use the police or the judiciary to victimise citizens.
“The President is only interested in ensuring that any person who breaks the law faces its wrath regardless of their status in society because no one is above the law,” Ms Mulenga said.