Zambia Police in Lusaka are today expected to question Phoenix FM Journalist Logic Lukwanda.
This was after Lukwanda was summoned to appear for questioning at the Police Headquaters in Lusaka.
Lukwanda is scheduled to appear for questioning at 09: 00 Hours.
Several police officers in a white land cruiser delivered the Call-Out to Phoenix Offices on Monday afternoon.
The reasons for his summoning have not been made public but sources close to the Police revealed that Lukwanda will be questioned on his coverage of the disappearance of 80 Black Lechwes.
“Logic has been very active in covering this story and the powers that be feel that he has been paid by enemies of the Findlays to write negative stories about this issue. The summoning is to see what he knows about this issue,” the source said.
Meanwhile, Conservationist Nsama Musonda Learns who first exposed the Black Lechwe saga says she will no longer respond to police summons over the matter.
Mrs Learns said she has now left this matter with her lawyers and that she will not respond to any police summons until they record a statement from the complainant and explain to her lawyers what charge the complainant has laid against her.
“If conserving nature in line with the legal and policy frameworks on environment and natural resources is POLITICAL and tantamount to treason, I need serious guidance so I am writing to the Anti Corruption Commission for guidance on the whistle blowers policy and protection of citizens.”
She said she will also write to the International Union for the Conversation of Nature for guidance on sale and translocation of Red list vulnerable species and the Human Rights Commission and Amnesty International for guidance on the protection of citizens rights.
Below is Mrs Learns full statement
MY LAST AND FINAL STATEMENT ON THE 80 BLACK LECHWE
Allow me to make my last and final clarification on the case of the 80 Black Lechwe so that those following can make their own informed decision.
On 13th October 2019, I made an appeal to all concerned citizens, CSOs, FBOs in Environment and the media to help us get information on the whereabouts of the black lechwes because they are a rare semi-aquatic antelope endemic to the Bangweulu Wetlands and being a conservationist I was concerned about their survival in a new habitat.
On 14th October, I wrote another statement explaining that the Black lechwe is listed under the International Union for the Conversation of Nature – IUCN Red List as a vulnerable species which requires special attention and conservation, therefore removing such a species from its natural habitat requires the Department of National Parks and wildlife authority to produce an ecological assessment to prove that the species will adapt to the new habitat. The report is supposed to be shared with the community resource board and proceeds from the sale are supposed to trickle back to the board for the benefit of the chiefdoms surrounding the game management area.
On 15th October I was called by a certain radio certain to confirm my appeal which I did and minutes later the Minister of tourism and arts was also called in who then refused that such a thing never happened and since called on the commissioner of police in Mansa to summon me to give more details. On the same day, the Permanent secretary confirmed that indeed a capture permit was issued in March 2019 by the former minister of tourism and arts and the 80 black lechwes were captured on 10th September 2019 and the same day translocated to Kwisoko/ Witpank and Langani ranches.
SURPRISINGLY, despite the answers I sought being given, the minister has gone ahead to accuse me that I’m being paid to attack the strongmen surrounding the president so that when they are out I attack the president himself “ati ichilya amani, bushikubumo chikalya ichibikila amani” meaning those who eat eggs will one day eat what lays the eggs!
Honestly Zambians an attack on the president is tantamount to treason, is this what the minister is saying? How can I , a mare conservationist with no political affiliations, single-handedly attack the ruling party and the president?
I am kindly inviting all interested parties to check all political party records to see if my name appears in any of their registers. As for being paid, Care for Nature Zambia has an account with Cavmont Bank, please be free to check our transactions and align them to our projects, the doors are open for public audit and including on my personal account. Anyone who has witnessed me being paid to attack the PF is also welcome to provide evidence.
As for calls for me to say who captured and counted the 80 Black Lechwe, I think the Department of National Parks and wildlife authority is better placed to give answers. In my layman position, I’m thinking the rightfully people to give the minister full information are:
1. Those who issued and signed the capture permit
2. Those who conducted the ecological assessment and produced report
3. Those who conducted the capture
4. Those who transported the Lechwe and the check points were they passed
5. The buyers and receivers of the lechwes
My final position is that I have now left this matter with my lawyers and I will NOT respond to any police summons until they record a statement from the complainant and explain to my lawyers what charge the complainant has laid against me
if conserving nature in line with the legal and policy frameworks on environment and natural resources is POLITICAL and tantamount to treason, I need serious guidance so I am writing to the:
1. Anti Corruption Commission for guidance on the whistle blowers policy and protection of citizens
2. The International Union for the Conversation of Nature for guidance on sale and translocation of Red list vulnerable species and
3. The human rights commission and Amnesty international for guidance on the protection of citizens rights
I would also like to advise my attackers that they have the right to remain silent or anything said can be used against them in the court of law
Nsama Musonda Kearns
Environmental and Human Rights Activist
Luapula Province -Zambia
3rd November 2019