HH, GBM face fresh charges

UPND president Hakainde Hichilema and his vice-president Geoffrey Bwalya Mwamba are facing fresh charges after the two UPND leaders declared that they would never recognise President Edgar Lungu as the country’s legitimately elected Head of State. The Zambia Police have warned that it was criminal for anyone to refuse to recognise an elected President and that Mr Hichilema and Mr Mwamba were likely to be arrested again and to face other charges. During a press briefing at his residence in New Kasama on Monday, Mr Hichilema declared that he was not going to recognise President Lungu as a legitimately elected Head of State, claiming he was ready to be arrested as many times for the crime. But police spokesperson Esther Katongo said Mr Hichilema was inciting Zambians to rise against a legitimately elected President and the Patriotic Front (PF) government and should be ready for the consequences of his statements. Ms Katongo said the police were going to charge Mr Hichilema and Mr Mwamba with fresh  charges because on Monday they were inciting a different group in a different  location to rise against the legitimately elected leader. She said in an interview that the arrest of Mr Hichilema and Mr Mwamba in Luanshya last week was a different case, which was currently in court and that they duo were only released on police bond. “But for inciting a different group of Zambians in a different location to rise against the President and the government is another offense and we shall charge them with new offenses,” she explained. Mrs Katongo said what Mr Hichilema and Mr Mwamba told their supporters was different from the Copperbelt incident as they were two different groups and locations. Meanwhile, Mrs Katongo explained that the police were still investigating the matter in which the Chief government spokesperson Chishimba Kambwili reported a matter in which he was accused of preaching tribalism against Tonga-speaking people. Mr Hichilema said in any other country, citizens would have risen against Government for his arrest and that of Mr Mwamba but wondered why his supporters had kept to the confines of their homes while he was incarcerated. Addressing his supporters on Monday, Mr Hichilema wondered why the UPND supporters were scared of rising to defend their rights against what he termed police brutality. He said the police had managed to instil fear into UPND supporters who were only watching their leaders being arrested and detained for exercising their freedom of assembly.



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