Opinion

Fix Zambia Police Service!

The Zambia Police Service needs urgent fixing – we mean serious fixing devoid of any political inclination.

And the fixing we are talking about here should start from the top most to those at the tail end of the Zambia Police Service. It is only through this process that a semblance of professionalism will get back to the police service (which rarely identifies itself as such but a police force ready to unleash its strength on mostly defenceless citizens).

There are many times that our police has come under serious condemnation for its actions that citizens feel were beyond the scope of their work. The happenings in Sesheke during the parliamentary by-election are still too fresh to be forgotten by the people. The violence between the two big parties – PF and UPND – saw the police joining in “to stop the animosity”. But the force used to stop the fights between the two rival groups has been described as not proportionate to the disturbance that existed during voting day in Sesheke. In short, the police in that scenario “unnecessarily” used maximum force on the cadres. In fact, the police followed Patriotic Front cadres to their lodge where we understand they beat them up “ruthlessly”, leaving some hospitalized. For this, the police command and a constable in Sesheke have been retired in national interest. These are Sesheke Police Commanding Officer Shapa Wakunguma, deputy Commanding Officer Flemming Chilongo, Officer in Charge at Sesheke Police Station Boniface Lengwe and Constable Frederick Mukela a constable.

One question that begs answers from the police command is: by firing the four police officers, will the political violence we have been witnessing during elections end? Will the animosity between the PF and UPND cadres end by this decision? We doubt that is the case. We feel the police acted hastily when coming up with this decision.

First, guidelines should have been followed in meting out disciplinary action on the officers. If, indeed, how they conducted themselves in Sesheke fell below their mandate, then they deserve punishment. But how this punishment is meted out is what is currently under contention. Yes, no police officer should discharge their duties in a partisan manner, but again, no police officer should lose their job without being subjected to the due process as guided by the law. Article 173 (3) of the Republican Constitution clearly states that “a public officer shall not be removed from office, reduced in rank or otherwise punished without just cause and due process”.

 

Secondly, considering the speed at which this decision has been made, it is difficult to ascertain whether or not due process was followed. The President only retires someone in national interest based on recommendations received from their superiors. He does not decide from the blues! Examples have been given about how no police officer who was part of the squad that fired teargas in hostels at UNZA, leading to the death of a 4th year student, has been disciplined. Regardless of the situation or crimes committed by the police officers, the police command here should ensure the law is followed in retiring one in national interest.

Thirdly, the police command must work on as a matter of urgency is to totally end police brutality wherever and whenever there is a disturbance caused by the people, regardless of political parties involved. The police command must hold dear the human rights of all; whether victim or lawbreaker.

 

Lastly, the entire police service needs serious cleansing – depoliticizing the whole Zambia Police Service to ensure that officers conduct their duties without any partisan inclination. Their role is to serve the government of the day and the people of Zambia in line with the law. The most dangerous police officer any person can ever encounter is one who is politically inclined. Imagine the treatment PF cadres would get from a police officer who is sympathetic towards the opposition? Imagine the treatment opposition cadres would get from a police officer sympathetic towards the ruling PF?

42 Comments

  1. GENIOUS SOGOLA JERE

    Firing police officers for such issues is not the solution of ending differences between the two strong paties (UPND/PF).The only solution to solve these problems is to the carbinet to seet down and find a way to recall all party leaders and heavely advise them to end such bully behaviour whenever in times of campaign.

    • leon

      We Zambians are cowards we know who is straining the work of our police men but we opt to go round and accuse our officers .Why is it that when a pf carder is displined by the police that police man looses his job but when its a upnd carder the police is said to have done a good job a upnd lady was shot and died but the police on dutu is still working not untill Zambians flush out this individual who i also fear because he has a bad heart Zambia will not enjoy peace

  2. semmy

    Police were at fault coz they are upnd cadres why beat pd cadres?they were at the lodge waiting for results why beat them?let hh take care of them.

    • Mude

      You need to understand that upnd has no capacity to employ it’s cares but pf has. The castes that were found at the lodge had machete and guns. Some even had police uniforms. Who do we blame then upnd or pf gvmnt

      • mulo 1

        Don’t just comment from the blues upnd turned the kampain scenario into a warzone,this fired officers know th reason y they have bin dismissed truly they acted unprofessionally.ask hu live in sesheke wat transpired

        • Sirwilliams am sure they haven't seen the fired officers in UPND regalia! The police officers were highly involved in UPND programmes!

          All fired police officers wont go to court and understand very well why they have been fired and accept total responsibility!

          Government apparent has evidence of there involvement with the UPND including photos of them in UPND regalia !

          Let’s love the nation and say sensible things

  3. Kings

    Whoever Came Up With The Idea Of Retiring Those Officers Should Rethink And Call Those Inocent Officers Back To Their Duties, Because These Cadres Will Never Change Their Habits. The Police Today Is For The Ruling Party, Thats The Only Problem We Have In Zambia, Yes, Fix The Police Service Which Lungu Has Spoiled.

    • mulo1

      Kings if u lived in sesheke u wudnt bliv HW yo upnd kadaz burnt pf houses and bycickles whilst the commanding officer z bzy watching from a distance and u demand hm 2 b reinstated way for?bravo kanganja

  4. francis baddeen

    The primary cause of the ruthless beatings which the PF cadres suffered at the hands of the police in sesheke was TRIBALIM then followed by partisan inclination. Zambian! when are we going to know God and start treating one another with impartiality???

  5. truth

    On QTV, Upnd told the nation that they cadres are not in police but prime tv reported and showed false picture 2 angre public out cry. We saw kicking a cadre on the ground 3 police officer and prime tv is a danger 2 our nation security. The fired officers has 2 go 2 court if the decision by govt was wrong and it wil decide but if gave a false statement 2 govt has b fired. Police has 2 work according the law of zambia not 2 tribal law of cousins 4 future appointmt. Upnd can promise them jobs 2 again supports but who knows if they fail win. By-election can not b a country wide decision

  6. Idiocy Detector

    Did not Kanganja order the Police to use maximum force except he was hoping it would not be his fellow cadres on the receiving end? Is it not insubodination to disregard the orders of your superiors? So who should be fired in this case?

  7. KAPOKOLA WANYA

    YES FIRE US,WE ARE VERY CORRUPT MWEE!

  8. mengmoreler

    Da only way z national dialogue! !!!

  9. mengmoreler

    Helo!wat about those police who caused da death of vesper plz wat z happening???

  10. Prince Mande

    Every policeman or civil servant belongs to some party of some sort that we all know, but it should be latent and should not be exhibited for everyone to see that i belong to this or that party. The problem we have in Zambia is the top civil servants, the IG, the PS etc are all inclined to the ruling party (in this case, the PF). Why do i say so, becuase that is where the appointing authority belongs if they don’t toll the party line they will be retired/sacked in national interest. The police service has been infiltrated by political cadres from the PF and end result is the police service is deemed partisan because of the cadres.
    Police in Sesheke were trying to rid itself of cadres who consider themselves more powerful than the police. This is what every policeman must strive to do to get rid of cadre infiltration or the ploice service will forever remain persived partisan. The IG, in my view, should have been supportive of it’s men and simply repremand them for using exccessive force. As it is now the cadres will kill each other and the police will simply watch for fear of being retired/fired in national interest. GOD FORBID!! What do you expect anarchy.

  11. Muntu odyaka

    We ar one let us jst unite with motto

  12. Truth

    Why bin law breaker and police treat u nicely no. If pf lose power the next party we do the same it what pf is doing or may b more.

  13. 50/50

    The fired 🔥 police officers are equalizers in there duties do you think the fired 🔥 police officers would have beaten up those cadres for nothing the fac

  14. the pastor

    Playing the blame games won’t help us. Neither firing police officers each time there a political violence won’t help us as well. How many officers are we going to fire. The only solution to this problem is dialogue. The people who are running away from dialogue are to blame for all these problems. And we know them. Don’t we are fools we know what is going on. And in 2021 we are going to act.

  15. Jah rules

    The pig must resign

  16. Chakuchanya

    I Was assorted by the officer in charge at kasumbalesa police , brutal officers need to be replaced in the interest of the nation

  17. Naks

    United we stand as a nation in doing, acting, practicing,talking with respect to right and wrong doers, divided this nation will fall without TRUE God’s direction IN US ZAMBIAN PEOPLE. Fault finding will bring division, hatred but correction will teach us something starting from kids to adults. It’s a pity to see our peaceful nation becoming a talk of vain. May Jehovah deliver us from his wrath and have mercy upon us. Love conquers all obstacles

  18. Sirwilliams

    All fired police officers wont go to court and understand very well why they have been fired and accept total responsibility!

    Government apparent has evidence of there involvement with the UPND including photos of them in UPND regalia !

    Let’s love the nation and say sensible things

  19. Nene

    Chakunya not assorted but assulted.

  20. Benjamin

    I stay in Chikumbi after retirement from Government in 2013. Why should the council a portion our land together with cadres. Zambia is very big why does the government not take these people elsewhere other than grabbing land from poor people where they get their livehood from farming. The President said every one should cultivate some of us we have not yet the titles because we haven’t been paid our dues.we didn’t want to settle in town life could have been unbearable so we appeal to you Bwana President to intervene the council to stop the rot

  21. Razor

    The whole top command including all commissioners need to be retired in national interest.

  22. David

    Comment
    I well understand dull people, always
    find a fault and tend to dismiss other from work.
    This reminds me about one teacher who use to take us in maths Mr Sinkala.
    His words were; if you are dull you dull
    no one can change you.
    you can die today and brought back to life still you will remain dull as that.
    What am saying is why firing people you’ve never employed.
    They are procedures to follow not firing anyhow.
    I have see no difference between government and a company.
    governed white elephant it is too difficult .So you can’t not learn from previous leaders such Kenneth kaunda, Fredrick Chili’s, levy mwanawasa, rupiah banda and Michael says how they delivered to national expectation

  23. david

    Comment
    yesteryears our forefathers use to talk of unip and mmd and today we talk of pf and upnd tomorrow we will talk of something else. who is going to remember them for their vigorous no one. but we will be remembering unip for their deliverance from being slavery. and, mmd for their opening us or taking us in the world. early pf for hard work. what about current pf? We don’t know maybe for their violence with current upnd .
    stupid!!!!!!!!

  24. Rocky

    the truth is that, people in sesheke who witnessed the brutal treatment PF carders received from the police officers have testified that those police officers were fully UPND supporters. on top of that gov’t has a lot of data from op officers about hidden agenda those officers had about frustrating the ruling party in the by election. Nowander it couldn’t take time to suspend them.

  25. Kanganja IG

    i was just directed!!!!!!!! please my fellow officers forgive me mwalishibafye govnt ya nowadays fiipuba,unless nga yali ati suula incito cindika ubwalwa so as he was directing me he was even drunk and beer was smelling and stinky from his mouth.

  26. David

    Comment
    cops has nothing to do with ruling or opposition parties when it comes to control the situation.
    if you feel like you’re better than others under normal circumstances I may you are died you are not a living thing. coz a living being ever sympathize with others.
    soon we will forget you just as it happened to unip and mmd.
    There are no sesheke residents can say that they witnessed the beating up of pf cadets.
    under normal circumstances let it your father then misbehave see if your parents will spare you.
    you are leaders but you lead by violence.
    stupid!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  27. Ramz,

    Such injustice must not continue in the coming yrs… Kanda v Government Federation of Malaya (1962) AC 322, “an accused person must be made aware of da allegations, statements and evidence adduced against/implicating him.. Not only that but also given an opportunity to correct, contradict or defend himself as to his actions.” Article 173(3) of da Zambian constitution says it all as laid out in da article above. Let’s not do things as we wish. Let’s abide to da laid down rules. If the alleged officers were truly at fault. Through da necessary load down procedures they cud hv bin found at fault.. The thing done by da zp command qtnz da professionalism of da service as well as da aspect of rule law. Zambia is a beautiful country, thus, violence must not be tolerated. Been da the organ that enforces the law nd maintains order it must also stink to the laid rules and regulations governing its the enforcement of its duties.
    To sum up, the police’s action to retire da said officers materializes a wide number of qtns among the zambian citizen more especially on da circumstance upon which its did so. It shud therefore, without fail attend to da opaque thoughts in da minds of citizens. One Zambia one Nation.

  28. Madiba

    It’s unfortunate that just beating PF carders some police officers have lost their jobs while no one died, the idiot who killed Mapenzi Chibulo is working and enjoying, the idiots who teargassed and killed Vespers in cold blood are working just because the killed never belonged to the ruling PF. Shame on you the person who fired police officers from Shesheke. You have remained with killers at the expense of loyal police officers.And my appeal to PF is stop impoting carders to places were there are by elections these imported carders aba kalulete.

  29. Monty

    The police have nothing to do with the ruling party i mean they can’t just beat up caders for nothing

  30. Ba Titus

    Truly, it is showing that dictorship govnt is rulling but as zambians we are now serious to boot out this dictatorship govnt wheather had or soft, we have come up with a serious solution

  31. James

    Please bring those brutal police officers to Luanshya. We need them to come and deal with the mushrooming Tokota style groups who have murdered at least three people this past week.

  32. yonyeka tako

    Comment
    I wonder why upnd cadres where not followed and beat up by baka finsa,could it be that pf cadres were figting among them selfs?

  33. Evans

    Sela tubobeko police officers for sesheke never heard this becoz its rural ,but lsk officers there aware about sela tubombeko I we ulolela pension. Sorry for those officers,others thy will learn a lesson.

  34. Herv Rena

    As Police we ar coming up with an agenda to beat up all PF cadres where ever they raise their ugly heads because baya sana.They wanto take over our jobs,ata.

  35. Zambia

    its very true the police needs to be fixed there is a lot of nonsense going on

  36. Michael nkamba

    Think before you add a comment ,in police service brutality has gone up some are blaming the IG for no reason police sesheke on that particular day did brutality upon cadres if remember last year we hearing brutality from police among innocent ,citizens police were not deployed to beat up people any how no

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