—Southern Province Permanent Secretary, Annie Sinyangwe, is concerned at the deplorable state of infrastructure at Gwembe Police Station which is making the work of the police there difficult.
Ms Sinyangwe is also worried that suspected criminals are escaping from police custody through the roof because Gwembe police are using an improvised staff toilet as a holding cell.
The Permanent Secretary was speaking in Gwembe today when she visited the police station where officer-in-charge, John Fumbelo, briefed her about the numerous challenges the police service in the area was facing in policing the valley district.
Mr Fumbelo told Ms Sinyangwe, who was accompanied by District Commissioner, Alice Mwiinga, and chief planner, Linda Siwale, that police in the area had lost credibility in the eyes of the members of the public because of the increased cases of suspects escaping from police custody.
He said only recently members of the public at Munyumbwe almost rioted against police after learning that a notorious criminal they had apprehended and handed over to police for prosecution had escaped under unexplained circumstances.
Mr Fumbelo said the holding cell for female suspects at Gwembe police station was never meant to be a detention facility as it used to be a staff toilet.
But Ms Sinyangwe assured the police that the provincial administration will engage the police command to see how best to resolve the infrastructural challenges at Gwembe police station.
She urged the officers to continue working hard as government would do its best to resolve their challenges.
The PS acknowledged that the officers were working in a poor and deplorable environment especially that the building being used as a police station was in a pathetic state with the ceiling board almost collapsing.