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Alba Iulia
Friday, September 30, 2022

Public order act, not bad – clergy

General News Public order act, not bad - clergy

Caritas Solwezi Director, Fr. Noel Haaninga says the current Public Order Act (PAO) is not an entirely bad document.

Speaking in an exclusive interview in Solwezi yesterday, Fr. Haaninga said the biggest problem has been the implementation of the Public Order Act by the police.

Fr. Haaninga said from his observations the people that are tasked to safe guard and implement the Public Order Act are the ones that create problems.

“The problem I think for me from my little analysis is not so much about the Public Order Act…as it is now is not an entirely bad document…as it is now there are a lot of good things that are there. The biggest problem has been the implementation of the Public Order Act,” he said.

Fr. Haaninga said even if changes are made to the current Public Order Act as long as the police remain with little knowledge on how to implement it there will always be problems.

He said the problem is that the people that are tasked to safeguard and implement the Public Order Act for the benefit of the Zambian People have little understanding of the spirit behind the Public Order Act or deliberately decide ignore to appropriately implement it.

Fr. Haaninga said previously the police abused the Public Order Act to the extent of injuring the same people they were supposed to protect.

“In the previous regime the police were too heavy handed…were too strong in the implementation of the Public Order Act so much so that what they were supposed to protect actually was injured and affected,” he said.

Fr. Haaninga said for him what is supposed to be looked at in the Public Order Act reform is its implementation by the police.

He therefore, appealed to Zambians to take part in the reform by making submissions and not to leave the reform process to the politicians.

9 COMMENTS

  1. Just the name says it all….are people opposed to the ruling party free from police harassment. Rev Father be truthful in whatever you say because God has no tribe. Otherwise just do the right thing join Frank Bwalya.

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  2. I think the Father has misled himself especially on the execution of the POA. Let me remind the Father that not long ago his fellow Fathers were arrested in Ndola at a private home whilst having a private discussion. Many Zambian politicians wrongly think that suppression of dissenting views and gagging of their opponents give them an advantage despite clear evidence that it doesn’t. Before the 2011 elections the PF removed all campaign materials for the UPND, red t-shirts and posters only came out after HH was pronounced as winner. The Police don’t act alone, they’re instructed by politicians. The UPND are also abusing the POA and the legal process like the reporting of people to stations away from their homes. We need Laws that’ll deal with these issues even if we had a lunatic as…

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  3. The POA always favours the ruling elite.
    All of Zambia’s past presidents and cohorts enjoyed POA until the tables turn only then would you hear them cry foul against it. When you witness people like Fr. Haaninga cherishing this Act, it only shows the side he belngs to: ruled or ruler. Let’s respect his opinion.

  4. You journalists need to be precise in your reporting. What is clergy? One priest speaking and not even officially representing his church? There are hundreds of denominations in Zambia with priests. Does any one person speak on their behalf? That said I think the priest is making a dangerous U-turn. Public order which we inherited from KK and who in turn inherited it from Welensky is bad for our democracy. Its as bad as the similarly inherited Presidential defamation law. Members of various clergies should be fighting these archaic Leninist laws

  5. You journalists need to be precise in your reporting. What is clergy? One priest speaking and not even officially representing his church? There are hundreds of denominations in Zambia with priests. Does any one person speak on their behalf? That said I think the priest is making a dangerous U-turn. Public order which we inherited from KK and who in turn inherited it from Welensky is bad for our democracy. Churches and citizens not in the ruling party have always opposed this authoritarian law.
    Its as bad as the similarly inherited Presidential defamation law. Members of various clergies should be fighting these archaic Leninist laws. Has the priest turned around because he favours the current leadership?

  6. You journalists need to learn to report with clarity. One person from one denomination, not even officially speaking for it, doesnt represent the clergy. Zambia has hundreds of denominations with priests who do not have one representative. Are they all saying POA is not bad? That said, this law which was inherited from KK who in turn inherited it from Welensky has always been defended by those in State House. This and the Presidential defamation law also inherited from Welensky are always defended by whoever is heading govt.
    But these are dictatorial laws that are out of step with our present constitutional democracy. Those not in government have been the ones who dont like it. And that includes the catholic church which has always been against the POA so what makes this priest…

  7. And that includes the catholic church which has always been against the POA so what makes this priest support this unfair law? It can only be concluded that it is because he supports who is in State House now? As selfish as those who defend laws that defend their comfort, the priest is also being selfish in abandoning his flock

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