Monday, June 24, 2024

Sorry President Lungu, You Can’t Arrest HH–We are a Democracy not a Dictatorship


By Kapya Kaoma

President Lungu’s despicable threat uttered when addressing the Mines Unions in Kitwe that he would arrest HH after he wins the August 12 election confirmed my long-term fears—authoritarianism. He rules by decree as opposed to by law; the courts and all law enforcement agencies exist for his bidding. In the real world, the Chief Justice, the Attorney General, the Courts and law enforcement agencies should be up in arms opposing this unethical and Machiavellian rant from the president.

I am among those who question how the privatization exercise was carried out. Zambians need to know the truth about the whole exercise for the sake of accountability–currently very little is known. There is a need for a Commission of Inquiry into the matter so as to help ordinary people understand what really happened with the national assets. The academic explanation does not help. If President Lungu spoke about establishing an Independent Commission, and seeking answers from all those who were involved including HH, it would be a fair game. Should the Commission find out that HH committed crimes and refer those crimes to relevant authorities for prosecution after Lungu wins the elections, still that would be fair game. In short, as long as the president is not using the law to punish his political opponents, it is constitutionally fine.

What makes President Lungu’s Trump-like Machiavellian threat illegal is that it violates the Constitution of Zambia. The president has no power to arrest anybody under the Zambian Constitution for the crime of privatization of Mines. Besides, the president does not determine who should be prosecuted or let go–we are a Constitutional Democracy and not a dictatorship. Of course, those miners believed the lie, but even Lungu himself knew he was lying to them.

I have repeatedly called the justice system under President Lungu as rotten to the core and his unethical threat simply confirms it; courts don’t exist to punish political opponents but to ensure justice for all citizens. The president is not the law, or above the law; he is a citizen. But under the Lungu regime, he is the above the law. This is the reason why Kambwili and GBM were both cleared of their charges once they rejoined PF. No wonder PF cadres are allowed to beat up people, while police officers watch at will.

President Lungu should understand that winning the election is one thing, governing is another. We are living in the age of social media where political organizing is becoming more and more popular than ever. HH is President Lungu’s biggest obstacle to winning this election. As head of State, his choice of words would set the mood for how people would react to the results. His unmeasured and childlike threats may energize his base, but could easily lead to post election violence that would be too costly. HH may lose this election, but he has a following that could easily destabilize the nation. There is nothing President Lungu can do to stop HH’s supporters from ruining the nation–we don’t have enough prisons for all of them. For this reason, respect for your opponent is a Patriotic act. Unfortunately Lungu seems to think he could remote control all Zambians–the truth is bullets don’t always win the war.

Understandably President Lungu is strategically exploiting the historical pain of HH’s economic victims–the miners on the Copperbelt. But does he really need to mislead the nation? The issue of mining today is totally different from that of the 1990s. Lungu wants to assume that HH is responsible for what happened with Vedanta Resources during the the Lungu administration. There is no truth to it–the two are different and should not be linked.

Audaciously, President Lungu has the right to highlight HH’s role in the privatization of the Mines–it is a fair question. It is one question that HH’s strategists have found hard to counter. In fact he could have simply used M’membe’s line when he called HH “greedy” for his role in selling off Zambian assets, the claim even the HH team hardly failed to deflect. He could have spoken about the price of copper and how that would impact the economy and better the lives of miners. These attacks would have been just as effective–but to threaten to use the law on a political opponent is immoral, abhorrent, evil and simply uncalled for. We are a democracy and the separation of power exists for the reason. If President Lungu wants to arrest HH, let him become a police officer.


  1. This is what happens when under 5s are leaders. Immaturity reigns. This dangerous man child Lungu must lose so the country can heal.

  2. Sorry kapya, the rule of law applies. If soliciting for funds from national rejects for offerings of kickbacks and under carpet deals is normal in a democracy, I Thorn won’t wanna be part of it. Isn’t it what we call corruption? Is this what the country want under the impossible h² regime. Look kid, this kid is not president yet and is already exposed for his corrupt tendencies. His selfish tendencies. His unilateral privatization thievery tendencies. What othet under carpet thievery deals is he already making without our knowledge.
    Destabilize the nation your stinking foot. Isn’t this kapya f00l already advocating for anarchy?

  3. Sorry kapya, the rule of law applies. If soliciting for funds from national rejects for offerings of kickbacks and under carpet deals is normal in a democracy, I Thorn won’t wanna be part of it. Isn’t it what we call corruption? Is this what the country want under the impossible h² regime. Look kid, this kid is not president yet and is already exposed for his corrupt tendencies. His selfish tendencies. His unilateral privatization thievery tendencies. What othet under carpet thievery deals is he already making without our knowledge.
    Destabilize the nation your stin.king foot. Isn’t this kapya f000l already advocating for ana.rchy?

  4. It is appaling that non.enti.ties like kaoma, a fellow who has not been in power can write theories and hallucinations of how he thinks the nation should run. He is a total mess, miss and a miserable misinformer. A misinformed misinformer in chief. No wonder KK delt with you.
    EL is still president with the powers he commands as president. If what this kaoma stoogy creep is saying were true EL would already be putting hetch hetchy in custody.
    What’s this spooky being with destabilizing the nation?

  5. How dare this upnd cadre dare our dear president?
    True, we’re being misinformed here.
    Hh can’t be allowed to be miscarrying himself with foreigners like the vendetta or vendatta family.
    Be Patriots for once.
    Uyu kaoma amano takwata. Chipubafye.

  6. President Lungu is a very dangerous man for our democracy, he has managed to full his people and apoint people he can easily manipulate in strategic position, further, he think is more clever than anyone else. I doubt if this man can even accept defeat, looking at his appetite to continue as president and he doesn’t even care even if he lies as president. Zambians wake-up we only have one to decide to redeem our nation from this dectationship and a carderism. #Vote wisely

  7. How dare this upnd cadre dare our dear president?
    True, we’re being misinformed here.
    Hh can’t be allowed to be miscarrying himself with foreigners like the vendetta or vendatta family.
    Be Patriots for once.
    Uyu kaoma amano takwata. Chi.pubafye.

  8. History will judge lungu harshly, as the worst president for zambia to ever have had.

    Put simply , lungu is a thug without any integrity.

    We all have skeletons buried somewhere, but lungu has a whole city of skeletons.

    The only thing going for lungu , is that he thinks he is a smart theif and Zambia is du.ll. but he will find out the hard way.

  9. This election has exposed those that collaborate with the greedy foreign elements who are responsible for the poverty we have endured for decades. These are the same rogue elements that ushered in the MMD government and started advising them on the total destruction of our economy. They are coming back for round two to finish us off. Please vote wisely.

  10. Is this hachilema asking for money through an illegality of a deal from the indians as international backers to beef up the PVT quoted misapplication of funds and regalia kapya kaoma is saying is not an illegality punishable by our competent laws?

    He will go down as the Most Corrupt in the history of Zambia.The Worst of the Worst ,Even the Devil will Reject him.It’s actually he who faces arrest .Zambian People will be shocked at will come out once he leaves office.
    The only Millionaires created in Zambia under PF were Ministers , Government Officials and Cadres.
    This was not a Government,it was a Criminal Enterprise,led by a thief ,for thieves.

  12. But HH sold no mine during privatisation. It’s Francis Francis Kaunda who did that and has since authored a book ” Selling the Family Silver”. Kapya Kaoma writes about HH’s economic victims. Which economic victims? Has HH managed or owned any mine?

  13. Ba kapya kaoma, don’t patronise us with your misinformation about how a nation should be run. So in a democracy people cannot be arrested?
    Is conniving with foreign powers and entities to win elections acceptable to you? Are you not aware of how Vedanta was running KCM, Zambia’s biggest mine and employer? HH actually supported Vedanta at the expense of poor Zambian miners. It is no wonder your under 5 politician HH has gone to them to ask for money in exchange for handing back kcm to Vedanta. If this is not corruption, what then qualifies as corruption?
    You also don’t seem to understand the role and powers of the head of state. Zambia’s ultimate security rests squarely on his hands. The buck stops with him and not the chief justice.
    Anyway, it just shows what kind of advisers HH…

  14. We are in this mess not only because of mr Lungu and some greedy PF ministers and cadres. I blame the brown envelope preachers . They have failed to give good advice to mr Lungu. The blood of innocent Zambians is on their hands as well. They have now raised an evil monster in our nation. These brown envelope preachers heap him with praise and false prophecies and tell him all is well. You too will not escape if you don’t open your eyes. But God will send us help from somewhere else. Christians for Lungu wake up your messiah is killing us your own brothers and sisters. Mr Lungu is behaving like King Saul when the evil spirit would come upon him and he wanted to kill david. We are seeing Another Saul incarnate (Lungu) wanting to kill David (HH). If anything happens to HH mr Lungu you are…

  15. Iwe ka Kapya, how do you support hh getting money from vedanta and promising them KCM back having breached contracts??? Don’t misinform Zambians about how GRZ should run.

  16. Mr. Mulenga, what is your point relative to this discussion? That’s if indeed that’s your name.
    The bible tells us that David , whom you refer to, was chosen by God to lead Israel. Which authority or who has told you that HH has been chosen by God almighty to lead Zambia? Don’t you think that if President Lungu really wanted HH dead, he would be history by now? Remember the presidential motorcade incident in western province? Even BBC pointed out to HH in their interview that in most countries, let alone African countries, he would be in prison.

  17. Why do PF stooges worry so much about lies about HH than the atrocities Lungu and company have inflicted on Zambia? Vedanta can not do what you dream of HH money to give back KCM. I do not believe that Vedanta still wants KCM, but will pursue the legal avenues to get back their investment. That will happen.

    As for you thieving PF this is the end of your road. Everyone has seen that you are rigging the elections. The wrath of the world is waiting for you !

  18. Presidential Candidate in the name of Edgar Chagwa Lungu was just politicking like any other candidate. The Humble man has just been humbled of what is happening on the ground is a clear signal that ECL stands slim chances of winning this forthcoming election. The USA govt has sounded its warning and this has been supported by RB and we are yet to get comment from VJ, Sikota Wina and SDAC leaders. Lungu does not seem to care as far as he is concerned he has already won this election no matter what the outcome will be. He has already won.

  19. Democracy means well for citizens who mean well for their country: Patriots. Not evil minded leaders who always want to shed blood! ABASH such leaders! Zambia is for real Christians and not pretenders. Wicked people must be caged once and for all in order for democracy to flourish.

  20. Most of our political leadership have dictator syndrome. While we did away with the second republic in 1991 they still think autocratically. Chiluba arrested KK and Lungu is threatening to arrest HH. Lungu keeps second republic laws like defamation of the president because he wants to be treated like Welensky or Museveni or that Korean president. We need to go forward with new minds not these dynosaurs from the second republic

  21. All else being equal, I do not see a scenario where Edgar Lungu obtains more votes than those of Hakainde Hichilema.

  22. Every Zambian should know that Privatization of the mines and any other government assets was done by the MMD government. President Chiluba oversaw the privatization of everything that was privatized.

    HH had no authority then to sell any government assets.

    President Lungu is not an ignorant man, although he does come across as an ignorant man for the sake of his politics. He too knows and yes even Masebo having been Finance Minister in the MMD government also knows very well that her MMD government was in charge of the privatization program.

    To say that HH privatized the mines is simply wrong. Maybe he benefited from the privatization program. Many other people who weren’t in the MMD government benefited from privatization too.

    Let’s be truthful about who privatized our…

  23. This idea of treating Presidents like small gods, the man now thinks he has all powers in the world, even powers he does not have

  24. Mario Mandzukic @ 7, don’t bring Bulkan confusion to Zambian politics. I know the hatred that tore Yugoslavia apart. It’s because u failed to see yourselves as citizens but as Kosovars, Croats, Macedonians, Bosnians, Serbs and not Yugoslavs. As a result, what was a promising Slavic country fell apart.

  25. Under 5 supporter great attempt the judges you are now calling rotten…corrupt etc… will hear your petitions if any… learn to be focused…

  26. Who said HH will be arrested? And why would he be arrested in first place? Don’t spread the lies Kapya Kaoma. People are wiser now.

  27. Wow, its Kapya Kamoa now. First it was Koswe, then Anthony Bwalya. Everyone tried to gain sympathy for HH. But nothing worked. This time it is Kapya who will have foot in mouth.

  28. President Lungu made it amply clear that HH will not be arrested before elections. That means, HH will be brought to justice for his crimes. Don’t twist the story and spin your narrative.

  29. President has set up a commission of inquiry to look into allegations against HH. Are you worried that he will be tried and convicted for corruption?

  30. Why are you siding with the criminal if you really want truth behind privatization to come out? Let the government do its job, you do yours.

  31. I can understand your situation. You have been a big failure in life. We have seen you going down over the years. Now you have nothing left to do, therefore better you keep your mouth shut.

  32. Do you really think, people will buy this bull$hit? Why don’t you be little innovative? It’s not even too late. You can start practicing now and you might succeed in 2036, who knows!

  33. This shows how useless a politician you are. If you really think that HH will be arrested without any reason then I must say, with people like you around, HH stand no chance of winning the elections.

  34. Hey Kapya, you seem to have lot of free time these days. Why don’t you start community service? It will keep you mind occupied and you could make yourself useful for the society also.

  35. Why is there so much hyper about making HH account for his role in the privatisation of the national assets? Kaoma you seem to be a defender of HH wait until you are on the panel of lawyers to defend your friend. Why would you be worried if your friend is clean? What is accountability? You are the first vuvuzela when people want accountability? Was HH involved in privatisation of national assets the answer is yes so what was his role that is all people are asking for.

    • President Lungu, a lawyer who doesn’t understand the law.

      Told his ministers that it’s written in the constitution that they have to carry on working even after parliament is dissolved. The ministers clapped to his speech only to be told to pay back the money by the Constitutional Court.

      Said Zambians have a poor reading culture when it is him who doesn’t understand what he reads

  36. 1… The author is writing from an emotional angle and pumped up with hot air. One of the first things that a sitting president does in every nation and every day is to receive an Intelligence Report

    When top intelligence has been presented to the president and he sees fit to have one arrested, he still can use his Executive Powers to instruct Security Wings and the Director of Public Prosecution to arrest any individual. These Executive Orders have in the past been used by all previous presidents in Zambia. They are used today in USA, Japan, UK, German, France, particularly in USA where a president can Director of FBI to arrest an individual based on intelligence presented to him.

  37. Since privatisation, more than $4 billion has been invested in the mines. In 1990, ZCCM produced less than 200,000 tonnes of copper. By 2012, Wibur Simuusa projected that ZCCM would produce 1 million tonnes. After Sata died, the production is hovering around 800,000 tonnes. Lungu’s PF just like KK’s UNIP, are failing to run the mines. Right now, with copper prices highest than ever before, if we were producing more than a million tonnes like the Congo (a destabilised country with the longest civil war in history) we would have reaped Magande’s windfall taxes and bettered the lives of the Zambian people. But, what can we expect from a man who had no vision and was still pinching himself to be a minister when he suddenly became President?


  38. 2… Therefore, there is nothing that can stop Lungu to use the Executive Powers that are specified to his office. And I am not here encouraging Lungu to threaten and intimidate HH in this campaign season.

    +++ Lets not write articles for 15 minutes fames, but to *Educate, *Inspire and take Responsibilities.

  39. Am non Partisan on most of the issues and sometimes I tend to sympathize with PF…but after listening to his speech about the Mongu incident and the arresting speech am now getting worried…things might get a little bit more heated and also listening to HH tell his supporters ” it’s now or never”……ladies and gentlemen brace yourselves for more drama after elections…both candidates are behaving like little kids…Edward chagwa Lungu might lose these elections or HH might lose these elections…the question is will both candidates accept the results….???…..the answer is no…and that’s when trouble will start….and if HH wins what will he do with the Judiciary which is more of a PF wing..
    I sincerely hope the nation can heal and move forward as one Country

  40. @ independent observer
    Yes I agree with you remember Trump supporters used to chant ” lock her up” Referencing to Hillary Clinton…a President can instruct the Justice department to investigate and make an arrest if possible but the way Lungu Said it….it’s like he will just wake up and rush to HH’s house with handcuffs then arrest HH….

  41. Seats being lost by PF – Chingola, Mfulira, Lusaka Central, Kabwata, Kanyama, Kafue, Chongwe, Munali, Kabwe Central, Kapiri, Mpulungu, Nakonde, Petauke (split between JJ and Siliya gives UPND edge), Rufunsa, Roan. More surprises.

  42. Lungu sold Cold Storage Zambia but he turns round to say otherwise. In life, you need not throw stones when you are a grass house. Corruption is what defines PF. All that PF is doing is to fabricate stories so that they win. We are already in the voting mood.

  43. Lungu is not even as courageous as RB to concede defeat, see the character of your president on Saturday. See.

  44. The president said: what Hakainde Hichilema did, to block him in 2017 at the Kuomboka ceremony, jeopardising the republican president’s well being without giving regard to the highest office of the land is suspiciously questionable and that if it were in other countries, HH would have been eliminated by now.

  45. Previously, Edgar Lungu referring to several ranting cries from HH that PF wanted him dead at UCZ in Chingola, ECL replied that if they want him dead, they would have easily succeeded by now. Evidently, no one wants HH killed by the bullet, but by the ballot.
    You also don’t arrest a loser unless he has a case, lawfully tried and convicted like it happened to Tukuta, the photo man.
    Zambia is a democracy not autocracy.

  46. Mulifikopo how can someone who is not part of the government sell government property.ask Edith nawakwi who was the finance minister even Lungu him self was part of the team

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