The Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA) Zambia is concerned with the unlawful confinement of two journalists, Mr Clayson Hamasaka and Mr Thomas Zyambo, who were picked up in the early hours of this morning, 9 July 2013, by the Zambia Police Service.
MISA Zambia is worried that the two journalists who are not criminals were picked up by Police without any charge and have been in Police confinement since then. The two have not even been formerly charged and still awaiting formal interrogation.
We consider the raid on the two journalists’ homes and their subsequent confinement at Zambia Police Headquarters as illegal and an indication that Zambia’s human right record is deteriorating. It is worrying that the two who are not criminals were subject of an early morning Police Raid although there is no state of emergency in the country where people’s human rights can be suspended.
This act is also a clear abuse of the rights of the two to freedom of movement. According to the Zambian law, a person should be charged, formerly arrested and then then take to court, but this was not the case for the two.
This should not be happening in a democratic society. We appeal to the Police to release the two journalists without any further delay as their continued confinement is not legal.
While MISA Zambia is glad that two lawyers, Mr Jack Mwiinmbu and Mr Gilbert Phiri, are handling the issue, it has also engaged Kabesha and Company to assist the team of lawyers representing the two Journalists.
MISA Zambia is also in touch with the Law Association of Zambia over the increasing media freedom violations.
Chairperson – MISA Zambia
9 July 2013