By Marvin Chanda Mberi

We wish to express our disappointment to learn that police officers are now endangered species at the hands of UPND as reported in some sections of the media.

In a Christian and Democratic Republic of Zambia, the political players have the responsibility to ensure that they compete for political power in a civil manner devoid of any taint of hooliganism.

The thuggery behaviour of UPND who were in the company of their leader Hakainde Hichilema which in the end resulted in the abduction of the police officers raises the questions of morality.

His continued silence on the abduction of the police officers in his camp is a mismatch to his claims that in an impossible situation he found himself in State House will take his thugs.

HH must emulate President Lungu who has consistently rebuked caderism especially that the President has no tolerance for thuggery irrespective of whether it is done in his name.

We are made to believe that HH or his top brass that were in the entourage in the Northern circuit have an inventory of the cadres they ferried to create an artificial popularity.

It will therefore be kind of HH to hand over the unruly cadres to the police other than his extremely provocative and unremorseful culture of justifying violence disguising it under the veil of self defense.

This is not the first time, Mr Hichilema is willfully paying a blind eye for violence committed in his presence.

As the nation may properly recall, few years ago, the UPND cadres attacked opposition Economic and Equity Party (EEP) President Chilufya Tayali in his presence at the Court premises. This was in a matter Mr Hichilema had commenced criminal proceedings for libel against his fellow opposition leader. To date, Mr Hichilema has not distanced himself from the violence neither has he demanded for their prosecution.

It is unfortunate that the protracted tolerance of such behaviour has now degenerated into making police officers their target. If the police officer can be abducted against his will, we wonder whether citizens are assured of safety under the UPND led Commission.

We urge the police to proactively follow this issue and ensure the matter reaches the logical conclusion so as to preserve the integrity and dignity of Zambia Police Service.

This is also a wake call that the police should take mostly issued careless statements such as “we will put this country on fire” or “defend yourselves against the police.”

In conclusion, we wish to send our sympathy to the embattled officers as they have relentlessly offered dedicated and selfless service to the nation. As a party wishing to govern the country, UPND must should patriotism by respecting the institutions of Government and always use established channels to handle their displeasure.

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