9.5 C
Alba Iulia
Thursday, September 24, 2020

Arrests, Fines for Covid-19 Offenders Unfair-UPND

Columns Arrests, Fines for Covid-19 Offenders Unfair-UPND

By Patrick Mucheleka

The revelation by the Zambia National Health Institute (ZNHI)director, Victor Mukonka that people flouting COVID-19 regulations will be penalized either through fines or jail sentences makes sad reading.

We feel such pronouncements and threats on Zambians is unwelcome especially that when we told the Government to take remedial measures aimed at preventing the further spread of the disease in late March, our calls fell on deaf ears. Instead of threatening the general public, Dr Mukonka should target the Patriotic Front officials who think that they are above the law.

It is very unfair for Mr Mukonka to start issuing misguided and misplaced threats on the general public when the people in the forefront violating COVID-19 measures such as social distancing, facemasking, sanitizing and handwashing are well-known people like PF Deputy Secretary General Mumbi Phiri who mockingly announced to the nation that while President Hakainde Hichilema was “busy enjoying his mansion”, the PF were busy campaigning for the 2021 tripartite elections.

If the ZPHI has no idea how and where to start effecting arrests on those contravening provisions of Statutory Instrument (SI) 22, they need look no further than State House and a number of senior PF officials who are in the front seat of disregarding COVID measures.

However, we are not surprised that the PF-led Government is in panic mode to try and arrest the upsurge of the pandemic owing to international pressure on how COVID donations have been utilized.

Before the government can think of arresting members of the general public who do not wear masks without government providing free masks.
We wish to warn Mr Mukonka not to be used as a rubber stamp by the PF to effect arrests and impose fines on innocent citizens who have not been given any facemasks as they cannot afford to purchase them owing to high poverty levels in the country.

If the ZPHI has enough resources to effect arrests on poor, defenceless citizens, we feel the Institute would do well to channel those resources on the purchase of face masks, hand sanitizers and hand washing paste for the masses.

We wish to call on the Police Command to say no to orders from the PF to effect arrests on unsuspecting citizens.

The Author is UPND Deputy Secretary General of Politics

13 COMMENTS

  1. Upnd are going to go down as the worst opposition in history. So you know covid kills and yet you expect us to give offenders sweets and cakes for breaking rules?this is what happens when as a party you are commanded to criticise pf at all means

    11
    12
    • Agony is arresting someone for not putting on a mask and when he fails to pay ,you throw him in jail full of convicts and later discovering that he has covid. Some experiments can be deadly.

      9
      2
  2. Foolishness of the highest order,fyonse ni politics sure?Mucheleka,grow up.Bitterness will won’t take you anywhere,you want us Zambians to die?Show some level of leadership please

    3
    1
  3. That doesn’t make any sense. Where are people going to get money to pay Covid 19.
    People are struggling even for food on their plates.
    Educate people on Covid 19 and release money for Covid 19..
    It’s not people ‘s fault to spread Covid 19 but luck of effective measures in place from the government side not PF.
    DONT CHARGE PEOPLE PLEASE

    7
    4
  4. It’s like Public Health Policy has gone to the d0gs pa ZED!
    Not sure why some educated people don’t have wisdom!

    7
    4
  5. Common sense is just out of reach in some PF decisions and I am glad that on this particular issue to arrest, fine or jail for not wearing face masks, Mucheleka reasons that its unfair to mete punishment on people whom you have not issued with free masks! Covid-19 is no fault of the citizenry and it is imperative that government invests in ensuring a healthy population! Zambia is experiencing results of reaction rather than proactive preparedness and the disconnect with containing the pandemic underscores mismanaged health care that has eluded prioritization!

    7
    1
  6. This is not a good experiment, the way police bundle people in the vehicles when arrested with no regard for health guide lines, now they have to bundle people in their already filled jails.

    4
    1
  7. People became relaxed of late. This is a necessary measure. A mask costs K5 and all one needs to do is change one’s mindset and make a mask part of one’s dressing-can you forget to put on a belt in the morning?? Even Britons are fining their citizens for not wearing masks. C’mon upnd, be sincere.

    11
    3
  8. WHAT HAVE WE DONE WITH TESTING AND TRACING? DO WE KNOW WHAT WE ARE DOING OR WE ARE JUST COPING WHAT OTHER COUNTRIES ARE DOING
    DO WE KNOW HOW MANY PEOPLE HAVE COVID19
    WHY HAVE WE FAILED TO SET UP TESTING CENTRES WERE PEOPLE CAN GO THROUGH AND GET TESTED
    THE NUMBERS WE HAVE IS NOT THE TRUE REFLECTION BECAUSE WE HAVE NOT DONE ENOUGH IN TESTING AND TRACING
    WE WILL CONTUNE TO WEAR MASKS BUT WHAT ARE WE DOING TO REDUCE THE SPREAD OF THE VIRUS
    PLEASE PEOPLE LOOK AFTER YOURSELVES
    WE OPENNED MARKEST WHERE THERE IS SOCIAL DISTANCING AND THERE ARE NO FACILITIES FOR TESTING
    GOD SAVE OUR COUNTRY

    1
    1
  9. But this man must be from another planet like his fellows….a Zombie, because no sane person can think and utter retrogressiveness in public like he has done worst still the party he has entangled himself in. Please grow up Mr.

  10. In Solwezi people were arrested for not wearing the same clothes Face Musks at one of check Point I was also the victims.Anyway I can’t go into details for what I saw but thanks for the officers that helped me.

Comments are closed.

- Advertisement -
Loading...
- Advertisement -

Latest News

Chipolopolo U15 Beat Bosnia & Herzegovina

Chipolopolo Under-15 finally got their Eight-Nation Tournament campaign going away in Croatia following a 2-1 win over Bosnia &...

PF in Monze calls for a peaceful reception of the President as he visit the district

The ruling Patriotic Front (PF) in Monze District has warned the opposition United Party for National Development(UPND) cadres against booing and jeering President Edgar...

Consider COVID-19 in the 2021 Budget – PMRC.

The Policy Monitoring and Research Centre (PMRC) has observed that the country needs to plan for the 2021 National Budget in such a way...

EU affirms its support in improving renewable energy

The European Union(EU) and the French government have pledged to continue supplementing government's efforts in improving the power generation and access to electricity by...

Residents of Kankoyo complain of sulphur dioxide pollution

A civic leader of Mufulira District says the continued sulphur dioxide pollution from Mopani Copper Mine has damaged most roofs in Kankoyo Township. Kwacha Ward...

More Articles In This Category