LUSAKA Zambia (Xinhua)
-- Zambian President Edgar Lungu on
Saturday warned diplomats not to interfere in the country’s internal
Various local media quoted the Zambian leader
warning the diplomats in the wake of the arrest of the country’s
leading opposition leader Hakainde Hichilema who has been charged
with treason, a move that has heightened tension in the southern
The United States (US) and the European Union (EU) have issued
statements expressing concern over the heightened political tension
in the country.
The News Diggers, a local online publication quoted the Zambian
leader warning the diplomats not to meddle in the affairs of the
country as Zambia was a sovereign state.
"Let me warn those who are accredited to Zambia as diplomats,
those who run civil society organizations, who believe that I can
interfere with the process, that they are wasting their time," the
Zambian leader is quoted as saying.
"I want the diplomats to hear me loud and clear that they will
not interfere with our sovereign matters here in Zambia.
"They came to represent their countries not to interfere in our
governance, please," he added.
Lungu said he could not interfere in the matter and that the law
should be allowed to take its course.
Hichilema, who narrowly lost to Lungu in last year’s presidential
election and has refused to recognize the Zambian leader as winner
as he believes the vote was stolen, was arrested last Wednesday and
charged with four counts, among them treason, together with five
other party supporters.
His party said he may appear in court on Tuesday and 20 lawyers
have been arranged to defend him.
Police refute denying Zambia’s
opposition leader medical attention
LUSAKA Zambia (Xinhua) --
The police in Zambia on Sunday refuted reports that
it had denied the country’s leading opposition leader medical
attention while in detention.
Hakainde Hichilema, leader of the United Party for National
Development (UPND), was detained last week and charged with treason.
Charles Kakoma, the party’s spokesperson said the opposition
leader’s health was deteriorating and he has not been feeling well
from the time he was detained due to the brutal attack and inhuman
gassing when the police raided his home.
The party has since demanded that the opposition leader should be
subjected to rigorous medical tests and treatment by independent
But police spokesperson Esther Mwaata-Katongo dispelled the
claims that the opposition leader’s health was deteriorating and
that he has been denied medical attention.
She said from the time the opposition leader was detained, the
police have been allowing his personal doctor to visit him and
conduct routine medical checkups on him.
She wondered why the police could deny the opposition leader
medical attention when he was just a suspect when people who have
been convicted were usually accorded their rights to medical
"As police, we will not take such unjustified statements lightly
because they are aimed at disturbing the security of the nation,"
she said in a statement.
Zambian police arrest another
LUSAKA Zambia (Xinhua) --
Police in Zambia have arrested another opposition
leader, a police spokesperson confirmed on Friday.
Chilufya Tayali, leader of the newly formed Economic and Equity
Party, was arrested on Friday night following a posting on his
Facebook page in which he accused the head of Zambia police of
covering his inefficiency when he arrested the country’s main
opposition leader Hakainde Hichilema and charged him with treason.
Esther Mwaata-Katongo, the police spokesperson, confirmed the
arrest of the opposition leader who has since been charged with
She said in a statement that it was an offense for the opposition
leader to further insinuate in his post that the head of the police
planned what happened in western Zambia’s Mongu district last
He is expected to appear in court next Tuesday.
Minister of Home Affairs Stephen Kampyongo warned on Thursday
that the government will not condone the behavior of causing and
In Zambia, libel is not only an actionable tort (civil offence)
but also a criminal offence, especially against the country’s
president and other constitutional office holders.
On Wednesday, the police arrested Hichilema, a situation that has
received mixed feelings, with other stakeholders saying the arrest
of opposition leaders was meant to stifle divergent views.
Zambia approves new
telecommunication licensing framework
LUSAKA Zambia (Xinhua) --
The Zambian cabinet has approved a new licensing
framework for the telecommunication industry, a senior official said
Minister of Transport and Communication Brian Mushimba said the
new framework was aimed at re-aligning and promoting competition in
He told reporters that the new licensing framework would also
encourage for more investment in the sector.
"The new regime now allows any operator to apply for a license of
data. This will also allow for more competition in the sector,
improve quality of service and lower costs of services in the
sector," he said.
The government, he said, has cleaned up the licensing framework
to unleash the potential of the industry in order to take advantage
of the latest technological advancements.
The old licensing system had a restrictive framework that did not
allow the entry of more mobile phone service providers.
Zambia state appealing for calm after arrest of
Zambian police hold opposition leader after overnight