Cadres belonging to the Patriotic Front (PF) ruling party broke out in violent riots this evening in multiple locations across the capital city of Lusaka.
According to our correspondent, the youths were extremely upset by the news today that Acting President Guy Scott moved to fire the Secretary General of the PF Edgar Lungu, especially in light of the mourning over the recently passed President Michael Sata.
Eyewitnesses say that several of the riots have been characterised by violent attacks on bystanders and random destruction of property, such as the smashing of car windows. Riots of PF cadres have been reported at Crossroads, University of Zambia (UNZA), Evelyn Hone College, as well as the National Institute of Public Administration (NIPA).
According to our correspondent who was close to the events at crossroads, an improvised cordon has been put up around the area, with citizens waiving away cars and people to stay away at the corner of Brentwood and Leopard’s Hill Road.
“Events appear to be very serious,” our correspondent reports from the scene. “Police have been deployed, and I have seen numerous injured people retreating from the center of the riot. People are on edge and clearly very frightened due to the unstable situation.”
At the riot site at NIPA, police were by 22 hours local time firing teargas canisters to push back the students who had broken part of the NIPA club fence and part of the wall fence to a neighbouring college Zambia College of Accountancy studies (ZCAS).
Their colleagues at Evelyn Hone College have been rioting intermittently from morning but for different reasons. The Evelyn Hone college students are fighting with the police over the outbreak of typhoid at the college where two students have already died.
The students have now combined efforts.
There are reports of citizens in Kabulonga joining the upheaval following the dismissal of Edgar Lungu. Reporting reaching Zambia Reports are that some residents have blocked Bishops roads and are burning tires on the road.
The decision earlier today by Acting President Scott to fire Edgar Lungu as party Secretary General has not gone down well with the PF hierarchy.
Some cabinet ministers have openly spoken out against Dr Scott using the national broadcaster ZNBC, while many are questioning whether or not he had the authority to fire Lungu from the party leadership without consultation with members.
Over the weekend, Lungu removed all suspensions of PF members, significantly growing his influence within the party.