Tuesday, June 18, 2024

LAZ Concerned over the Increased incidents of the Police detaining suspects beyond the Mandated 24 hours Period without Charge

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The Law Association of Zambia (LAZ) has expressed grave concern over the increased incidents of the Police detaining suspects of bailable offences beyond the 24 hours stipulated in our Criminal Laws.

In a statement released to the media and signed by Honorary Secretary Sokwani Peter Chiembo, LAZ said that while Section 33 of the Criminal Procedure Code, Chapter 88 of the Laws of Zambia permits detentions for a period of only up to 24 hours, after the lapse of 24 hours, the Police are mandated to take the suspect before the appropriate Court or release the suspect on bond.

Lately, a number of opposition members have been detailed beyond the 24 hours limit without charge with the latest being United Party for National Development (UPND) Presidential Aide Mubita Nawa who got released today after spending more days than mandated by the law in detention without charge.

Below is the full LAZ statement

PRESS RELEASE BY THE LAW ASSOCIATION OF ZAMBIA LAZ IS CONCERNED AT INCREASED INCIDENCES OF POLICE DETAINING SUSPECTS OF BAILABLE OFFENCES BEYOND THE STIPULATED 24 HOURS

(FOR IMMEDIATE CIRCULATION TO MEDIA HOUSES)

The Law Association of Zambia (LAZ) has noted, with grave concern, increased incidents of the Police detaining suspects of bailable offences beyond the 24 hours stipulated in our Criminal Laws.

Whilst our Laws permit the Police to take into custody a suspect, Section 33 of the Criminal Procedure Code, Chapter 88 of the Laws of Zambia permits such detentions for a period of only up to 24 hours.

After the lapse of 24 hours, the Police are mandated to take the suspect before the appropriate Court or release the suspect on bond. The Courts of Law have been categorical in holding that the Police can only arrest for offences, and has no power to arrest persons for the purposes of making inquiries. Therefore, detentions for enquiries and beyond the stipulated 24 hours are an infringement of a person’s freedom of movement guaranteed by Article 22 of the Constitution of Zambia.

In a country founded on and which thrives on the Rule of Law, of which LAZ is mandated to promote by its founding statute, wanton disregard of the Law by anyone must not be condoned.

The Rule of Law demands that every person, including the Police, must discharge their functions within the confines of the Law. In our democratic society anchored on Constitutionalism, no one is above the Law.

LAZ is of the further view that such detentions by the Police, especially on politically inclined accusations, have the potential to contribute to a negative atmosphere which should be discouraged as we go towards the 2021 General and Presidential Elections.

It is in the interest of the country for every stakeholder to play their role to contribute to peace before, during and after Elections.

LAZ has since written to the Inspector General of Police to ensure that the situation is quickly redressed.

Dated this 21 st day of May, 2021.
________________________________
Sokwani Peter Chilembo HONORARY SECRETARY

14 COMMENTS

  1. PF using the deplorable disease infested Police cells to break down and fix people….really shameful and its 2021….why are his lawyers not enforcing Habeas corpus??

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  2. These are tactics employed by the thief lungu. Wait after 12 august. The convict will taste his own medicine together with his corrupt minions.

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  3. Fuseke. Even when these thugs are charged within 24 hours they will still complain about the charges. Look, if you don’t want to spend night in cells then put your chi tail in between your legs and behave yourself

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  4. This LAZ is useless too and why this president Shonga quiet on eligibility petition!

    Why is he numb on the matter affecting the public, what is his role as the people violating the constitution ate his members judges included.

    We need the LAZ of yester years of William Mweemba, George Kunda and Linda Kasonde times.

    What is happening to our country even cadres have balls to squeeze but this institutions will be rendered useless beyond redemption.

    PF must go!

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  5. Where is PF top brass and ZP when that PF Lusaka Youth chairman is issuing orders to his members to deal with Sangwa like a political opponents!!

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  6. LAZ is just an institute full of self serving politically inclined individuals whatever they say is just their mere opinion.

    LAZ already sold themselves to the highest bidder, they should never be taken seriously.

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  7. Release Mubita Nawa now! Why should a person be detained for defamation. Its not an offence that causes bodily harm. Police should be working on serious cases not libel.

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  8. Mere statements won’t yield anything, especially that we’re dealing with a regime whose frontrunner is ineligible but is determined to force his way to an illegal 3rd term. Indite the officers handling the case and arraign them before Courts of Law to explain why they shouldn’t be cited for breaking the Law. Don’t issue empty statements after injury has already been caused

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  9. LAZ should also be concerned about its members, like Sangwa abusing the courts of law for political gain.Its now clear for all to see that LAZ is politically inclined and has become irrelevant to the political process.

  10. LAZ is one of the most useless congregation of wannabe’s. How many people are languishing in cells/jails for years without appearing before courts? There are people who have been harshly punished just for stealing a chicken as opposed to others that have committed serious crimes. And please don’t get the idea that I condone wrong doing. But my question is where are LAZ then? Just because it’s a UPND cadre they have their tails up! Learn to be impartial and professional LAZ. I am so disappointed with this young man Soks…Abudi has his head so far back his backside he can’t think.

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