The Media Director of the Patriotic Front (PF) the former ruling party in Zambia Antonio Mwanza has urged the current President Mr Hakainde Hichilema to take a leaf from the President of Kenya and tone down on the ´persecution´ of his predecessor H.E Edgar Lungu in a radio interview.
Mr Mwanza advised Mr Hichilema that the continued ´persecution´ and attempts to prosecute Mr Lungu will only divide the nation and excite resentment further, instead Hichilema must focus on ´fixing´ the economy.
This follows a controversial decision this week by the Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) to seize a Lodge they thought was owned by President Lungu. The property turned out to belong to someone else according to official ownership records.
“He (President Lungu) was President for seven years, a minister in two different ministerial portfolios and legislator and a private practicing lawyer of many years, now he can’t own a property? Mr Mwanza asked.
Turning to Kenya that recently elected William Ruto after the end of an era of Uhuru Kenyatta, Mr Mwanza said, “Mr Hichilema must learn from president Ruto who is treating predecessor Kenyatta with respect. That man (Lungu) is a former President, a father, and a brother you don’t go around treating him the way he is being treated in Zambia.”
Support for the immediate past President of Zambia Lungu has been growing from various sections of the country, within and outside the former ruling party.
Today PF Central Committee member and presidential aspirant Ambassador Emmanuel Mwamba in a statement vehemently condemned DEC for entering without permission and attempt to search a private property belonging to Mr Lungu.
The search was only stopped by President Lungu himself who drove there after he was alerted by caretakers at the premises. The DEC officers drive away without a search.
In Kenya, Ruto has made predecessor Kenyatta who supported his rival publicly a special peace envoy to Ethiopia and the Congo, in Zambia Lungu faces possible prosecution even after handing over power peacefully after an election defeat last August.
In the past DEC has interrogated President Lungu´s wife, daughter, son in law and his own son but its only today 29th September that they have directly gone for the former head of state who constitutionally enjoys immunity against a probe and prosecution.
Mr Mwanza has described DEC´s disrespectful and contemptuous behaviour as sad, it would come to haunt Mr Hichilema when he relinquishes power.
“Why are you tormenting the man (President Lungu) like this?” Mr Mwanza concluded.
He also questioned the Hichilema administration to continue allowing DEC to be run by a person that faces court action after her nude images with bananas went viral for more than a week on social media.
Acting PF President Hon. Given Lubinda has for a long time now asked, in fact begged for the current administration to treat President Lungu with the respect a former head of state deserves.
Recently when asked about his (Hichilema) relationship with Mr Lungu by BBC, Mr Hichilema said, “He jailed me 15 times).
Meanwhile fuel and food prices including those of fertiliser and other agriculture in puts continue to increase in Zambia with no signs of slowing down says Mr Mwanza.