Lusaka, June 19, 2023 – The government has responded to the allegations made by Mr. Emmanuel Mwamba, a member of the opposition Patriotic Front political party, regarding his alleged mistreatment by the police during his arrest. In a statement issued today, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Information and Media, Mr. Kennedy Kalunga, expressed the government’s concern over the circulating claims.
On June 17, 2023, Mr. Mwamba was charged and arrested by the police on two counts of forgery as per Section 342 of the Penal Code Chapter 87 of the laws of Zambia, and three counts of publication of information contrary to Section 54 of the Cyber Security and Cyber Crimes Act No. 2 of 2021. Mr.Kalunga emphasized that law enforcement agencies in the country operate with the highest level of professionalism and integrity, guided by comprehensive protocols that ensure fair treatment of all individuals in custody.
Mr. Kalunga reiterated the government’s commitment to upholding the rights of every citizen, irrespective of their political affiliation. He acknowledged that Mr. Mwamba has reported the matter to the Police Complaints Commission, the authority responsible for investigating allegations of misconduct or brutality involving law enforcement officers. The government respects this process and eagerly awaits the commission’s report, which will provide further insights into the arrest and any potential misconduct, ensuring a fair and impartial assessment of the situation.
While the investigation is ongoing, Mr. Kalunga urged the public to refrain from jumping to conclusions or spreading unfounded rumors. He called upon all citizens to be patient and allow the investigative process to unfold. The government remains dedicated to creating an environment where civil liberties are protected, enabling individuals to freely express their views, regardless of their political affiliations. However, it is equally important to ensure that such expressions do not infringe upon the rights of others or disrupt the peace and stability of the nation.
Mr. Kalunga concluded the statement, reiterating the government’s commitment to transparency, fairness, and the protection of civil liberties.