Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Chiluba shouldn't use Regina's case to attract sympathy - Emily

Chiluba shouldn't use Regina's case to attract sympathy - Emily
By Brighton Phiri
Wednesday September 05, 2007 [03:00]

CHILUBA should not use his wife's case to attract public's sympathy, Women for Change executive director Emily Sikazwe said yesterday. And Transparent International Zambia (TIZ) president Reuben Lifuka said Regina's case should serve as a lesson for the Task Force that they should be thorough when dealing with corruption cases and suspects.

Commenting on former president Frederick Chiluba's action at Lusaka's Woodlands Police Station where he threw himself into a cell to join his wife Regina who was detained there, Sikazwe said it was wrong for Chiluba to tempt the police to arrest him for illegally detaining himself in a police cell in a bid to attract public sympathy.
"Chiluba must wait for his turn as our courts of law are still dealing with his case.

I expect Chiluba as former head of state, to know that it is illegal and wrong for him to throw himself in a police cell without being arrested. Chiluba should not tempt our police to arrest him by throwing himself into the cell in his quest to attract public sympathy. He is lucky because the police treated him like that considering that he is a former head of state," Sikazwe said. "But Chiluba must be reminded that during his tenure of office, he used the police as instruments of terror...our memories are still very fresh on how the police tortured the late Dean Mung'omba. I, too, suffered at the hands of the police on Chiluba's orders."

Sikazwe commended the police for acting differently from the way they acted during Chiluba's era when Dr Kenneth Kaunda was arrested and thrown into police cells without any sympathy.

"During Chiluba's era it was unheard of for the police to plead with anyone, including Dr Kaunda, to get out of the police cell. Instead they were brutal under Chiluba's orders. Ask Dr Kaunda, Fred M'membe, Dr Rodger Chongwe, Post Newspaper journalists, among others, they have something to share," Sikazwe said. "We all know that under our laws, Chiluba is innocent until proved guilty, but as people of Zambia we have pronounced him guilty for crimes he committed against us. Many of our people who could have joined us in pronouncing Chiluba guilty are dead and buried because of his actions."
She commended the civil society for sensitising the police on the need to uphold and respect human rights.

And Lifuka said TIZ was disappointed with the incident at Woodlands Police Station because both the Chiluba family and Task Force could have acted differently.
"We believe that the Task Force could have handled the matter differently and Mr Chiluba and his wife Regina could have behaved in the manner befitting their status," Lifuka said. "Mr Chiluba and Regina may have some problems with the state entering nolle but that does not mean they should subvert the law."
Lufuka said the drama surrounding Regina's case should serve as a lesson for the Task Force to ensure that their actions did not raise any questions when dealing with corruption cases.

"The Task Force must be professional at all times to ensure that their actions do not raise any questions," said Lifuka.

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