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49 ‘gassers’ before courts


FORTY-NINE suspects who were arrested for spraying choking chemicals in homes and schools early this year are still appearing court, Home Affairs Minister Steven Kampyongo has told Parliament.

Delivering a ministerial statement on gassing incidents which hit the country, MrKampyongo said Zambia police recorded 570 cases of spraying incidents in homes ,schools and colleges and that 68 lives were lost.

He said Copperbelt recorded the highest number of cases, standing at 369, Lusaka 56 while Muchinga and Western had 37 each while central recorded 19 cases.

Luapula Province had 17, Southern 16 Northern 13 and Eastern Province recorded six cases.

The minister stated that the spreading of false information through social media platforms to some extent incited members of public to take the law into their hands.

Arising from this, three people were arrested for promotion of hatred, violence and public disorder and were still appearing in the courts of law.

Mr Kampyongo disclosed that 367 persons were arrested for disorderly and riotous behaviors across the country.

“Mr Speaker with regard to incidents of instant mob justice, a total of 116 people was arrested in connection with mob justice incidents, the arrests recorded were in Central 35, Muchinga 30, Copperbelt 13, Northern 12, Southern and Luapula 10 arrests each.

“Investigations into the death of all those who have died at the hands of instant mob justice have also continued.

“It is my sincere hope that the long arm of the law shall in due course bring all those responsible for deaths of our people through instant mob justice to book,” he said.

He explained that the incidents of gassing created widespread public insecurity up to March 4, this year.

And Mr Kampyongo said Government was closely working with Zambia Information Communication  Technology Authority in curbing social media abuse and social media falsehood Home Affairs minister Steven Kampyongo has said.

He said government is concerned with the abuse of social media by some people.

Mr Kampyongo said that social media falsehood are threats to the country hence government is closely working with ZICTA so that people who are behind falsehoods are held accountable.


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