There will be no sacred cows in cadre violence investigations

Dr Solomon Jere congratulates Lemmy Kajoba after his appointment and swearing in at State House as Police Commissioner for Muchinga Province
Dr Solomon Jere congratulates Lemmy Kajoba after his appointment and swearing in at State House as Police Commissioner for Muchinga Province

THE Zambia Police Service is demonstrating that there will be no sacred cows in its investigations into last week’s violence between rival factions of the Patriotic Front (PF) that claimed the life of Moses Simuwela.
Yesterday the police summoned and interviewed Lusaka Province PF youth chairman Kennedy Kamba in connection with the violence that has been roundly condemned by a cross-section of the Zambian society.
In the past, political cadres especially members of the ruling parties were the law unto themselves.
Zambians have not forgotten the abuse they suffered at the hands of UNIP vigilantes in the 1980s and MMD thugs in the 1990s.
Human rights were just on the lips of the politicians who controlled these hooligans.
No effort was made to translate public pronouncements on the government’s commitment to the protection of the rights of citizens into action.
Political party cadres literaly got away with it.
Today the PF is saying that era is long gone. No one will be above the law as evidenced by the summoning of Mr Kamba by the Zambia Police Serivice for quetioning.
Mr Kamba told the media on Tuesday that he had been summoned to appear before the officers investigating the murder of Mr Simuwela.
The PF has made it clear that it will not shield anyone so that the police can do their job without any interference.
And by allowing police to summon and interrogate Mr Kamba, the ruling party has sent a clear message that its members are not above the law.
Should the police unearth any evidence linking Mr Kamba to the atrocity, directly or indirectly, they should not wait for any instruction from anyone but arrest him in accordance with existing laws.
If they find that he is innocent they should clear his name in the eyes of the public.
Senior PF leaders who have nothing to do with last week’s intra-party violence have no reason to fear.
In the Sunday Mail we quoted Minister of Home Affairs Edgar Lungu as saying that police should leave no stone unturned in their quest for the truth.
Mr Lungu urged the police not to look at a person’s status but use their professional judgement.
This is the kind of leadership Zambians were expecting to see from the top echelons of the PF.
The message is loud and clear: there will be no sacred cows in this investigation.
Mr Lungu must be commended for giving the police the mandate to investigate the matter without pandering to particular interests.
Some opposition members of Parliament have demanded to know why police have not made any arrests of senior PF officials who could have been directing the violence.
The summoning of Mr Kamba shows that the officers are not siding with anyone but merely doing the job in the best way they know
We are happy that Mr Kamba has assured the police that he will co-operate with the police.
The loss of life was not necessary because the rival camps could have reached a compromise.
The Ministry of Home Affairs should provide the Zambia Police Service with all the resources it needs to bring this case to a speedy conclusion.
This will enable the officers to carry out their mandate without hindrance.
Let there be no sacred cows. The family of Mr Simuwela and Zambians are waiting to see justice done.