‘Police won’t stop ministers holding meetings in contentious constituencies’

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—Police in Eastern Province has maintained that it will not take action against any government minister who holds meetings in constituencies where there are pending by-elections because the Public Order Act does not oblige any government minister to notify the police whenever he or she wants to hold a meeting.

Responding to concerns by some political parties that the police had allowed PF Secretary General, Wynter Kabimba, who is also Justice Minister, to hold meetings in Petauke Central and Vubwi Constituencies where there are pending by elections while other political leaders were not permitted to do so, police deputy commissioner, Hudson Namachila, said the act does not restrict Government ministers to hold meetings in any place in the country.

Speaking to journalists in Chipata this morning, Mr Namachila noted that though Mr Kambimba was in the province to hold meetings with party members, police could not stop him from doing so because he is a serving minister who is not obliged to notify the police on his meetings unlike other political players.

He said those criticizing the police on the way that it implements the Public Order Act should take time to read it and understand its contents before criticizing the police on how it implements the Act.

And commenting on Mr Kabimba’s directive to the police to arrest PF cadres who engage in violence, Mr Namachila said the directive was made in line with the law and the police will take action on anyone involved in violence regardless of their political affiliation.

He stated that the police will ensure that anyone who comes into conflict with the law is brought to book.

Yesterday, PF Secretary General, Wynter Kambimba, directed police to arrest party cadres involved in violent activities.

Mr Kabimba made the directive when he addressed PF members at Luangwa Lodge in Chipata district.