By JAMES KUNDA –
INSPECTOR General of Police Kakoma Kanganja has condemned the acts of violence by suspected United Party for National Development (UPND) cadres who ambushed people in Bweengwa Constituency of Southern Province, after President Edgar Lungu addressed a public rally on Saturday.
Mr Kanganja warned that those involved will be arrested and prosecuted.
The cadres ambushed unsuspecting people around 19:00 hours.
Three motor vehicles belonging to the Police, Ministry of Social Welfare and the District Commissioner, respectively, were damaged and two police reserve officers injured in the process.
Mr Kanganja said the Police was dismayed with the conduct of the cadres who blocked the road from Bweengwa Primary School using poles and stones.
He said in a statement in Lusaka yesterday that the cadres stoned passing vehicles, members of the public and police officers.
“The cadres hid in maize fields ambushing the people as they returned from the rally that was addressed by President Edgar Lungu at Bweengwa Primary School.
“We strongly condemn the conduct of these UPND cadres and investigations into the matter have been instituted and all those that were involved will be arrested and taken to court,” Mr Kanganja said.
He said the Police had time and again appealed to all political parties, particularly the UPND to restrain its cadres from being violent, but the request had not been adhered to, especially during political activities in Southern Province.
“Zambia Police would like to strongly warn all political parties to desist from being involved in violent behaviour as all those who will be found wanting will be prosecuted,” Mr Kanganja said.
Meanwhile, the Southern African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (SACCORD) has echoed Mr Kanganja’s sentiments on the matter.
SACCORD executive director Boniface Cheembe said in an interview yesterday that his organisation was against any form of political violence.
“Our position is that violence of any kind should not be condoned and those who perpetuated the confusion in Southern Province should be brought to book.
“As SACCORD we outrightly condemn the violence and maintain that the perpetrators of such acts face the law while the victims get justice,” Mr Cheembe said.