Letters to the editor

Mon, 05 Feb 2018 15:08:35 +0000

Traffic corruption continues

Dear Editor

I parted with K300 to a woman traffic police officer last Saturday.

I followed a truck through a green light. Only to be confronted by an officer waiting on the other side  for this eventually. She accordingly stopped me alleging that I had jumped the red light.

I protested that I entered the junction on green but was obviously obstructed by the truck to see whether the light had gone amber. She could not hear any of it.

I was given the option of either paying an instant fine or face the daunting prospect of traffic court on Monday.

There was really no choice. I paid the fine of K300, she wanted more but that was the only money I had.

As I drove off, I wondered how many other people had parted with money in the same manner and how much she would have made at the end of the day.

Little wonder most traffic officers drive posh cars and indeed we hear that the traffic section is the most wanted because of the fringe benefits. Most traffic officer apparently also own minibuses which re spared the routine that civilian owners face.

The bigger story is that the traffic section in Lusaka has been deliberately enlarged because the proceeds from extortion are shared  with the top brass.

The experience has however left me thinking.

The entire Government is aware that traffic policemen and their womenfolk extort money from motorists, is there no way this can be stopped.

A brilliant idea to have uniforms without pockets may not work because police women will simply push man in their bra, where they traditionally keep it anyway and their menfolk will secrete it in their trousers.

Short of making our officers wear tight plastic underwater diving suits there is very little chance of stopping this malaise which is quite a nuisance and a strong rebuke against the lack of leadership in the Police service.

If in the interest of stopping cholera spreading, the Government could employ all assets including the security wings, it should be possible to eradicating this malaise. Let other wings drive in unmarked vehicles and eradicate this menace.

This extortion is done in broad daylight, preying on the ignorance and often fear of the unknown. Motorists are not fully conversant with offences that are impoundable and which will go to the traffic court and so on. These officers therefore prey on this ignorance.

Surely technology can be employed for speed traps, jumping red lights and even checking for licences, to eliminate the need for corrupt human beings. Zambia can learn from developed countries that have employed the use of computer technology that will for example immediately detect that a car licence has expired and thereafter generate an automatic call out to the owner. After all  RTSA has a computerised record of all cars in the country which record will document and keep a record of expiry. Why wait for a traffic officer to make money on such an exercise that can be done from the computer data base or are we too lazy. Why not put cameras on the Manda hill junction to take pictures of offending vehicles and send bills to the owners of the offending cars whose details will be on the RASA data base instead of allowing the conmen and women masquerading as police officers milk motorists.

Leadership in our forces should not be about keeping hordes of officers, it should be about being innovative.

Manfred Kawesha.

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Give us title deeds

Dear editor,

I write to raise awareness over the land which once belonged to Mr Andrew Kashita, the former transport and communications minister. The land is situated west of Kamanga Basic School.

In 1998 he demarcated the said land and sold it to individuals who later built houses in what is today called Kamanga Overspill. At that time, Mr Kashita had engaged Mr Sonny Mulenga to oversee selling of the plots and many people bought the plots and paid money to Mr Mulenga until for some unknown reason, Mr Kashita came personally and stopped all those with outstanding balances from paying to Mr. Mulenga but to himself. Later the new plot owners were told to pay for a loan which Mr Kashita owed a bank so that a “CAVEAT” could be removed since the land’s title was used as collateral by Mr Kashita to obtain a loan from the bank. This money was donated and paid through a lawyer who even came to reassure the poor residents that now that they had raised the required sum, the title shall be subdivided and each house hold would have a title. To date, nothing has been done even after the loan at the bank had been cleared. My fear is that Mr Kashita is now in his advanced age and he should ensure that the people on this piece of land are issued with tittle deeds before something happens to the big man. The people do not owe him anymore money. In the meantime, there are people who are going round almost every month calling for meetings from where they are collecting money and not issuing receipts, claiming they are fighting to get our title deeds. I advise people in Overspill in Kamanga/Chamba Valley area not to pay anything to these people until we see our titles. Twenty years is such a long time to wait.

Jack Phiri, LUSAKA.

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Njoya wife jailing timely

Dear editor,

Zambia Association of Musicians (ZAM) president Njoya Tembo’s wife was recently slapped with a five year jail sentence by magistrate Greenwell Malumani.

Njoya’s wife, Brenda is alleged to have assaulted her 13-year-old niece by burning the little girl on her chest with a hot pressing iron. The girl is a double orphan. She met her fate when she used the pressing iron she was not supposed to use.

The incident happened in Lusaka’s Chalala residential area where the couple lives.

The country is grappling with the problem of child violence among others. Frantic efforts are being made to avert the scourge.

A person in her or his right frame of mind cannot inflict such excruciating pains on the girl who did not choose to be an orphan.

The conviction of Njoya Tembo’s wife is a timely warning to perpetrators of child abuse and violence.

Elemiya Tembo, Lusaka.

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Simayaba right on Tongas   

Dear Editor,

I totally agree with Sylvester Simayaba with his view of appointing Tongas to positions of authority in the PF party structures in their respective districts of the Southern Province.

If these positions are elective and since electing certain Tonga individuals may not work, let us as PF have a strategic and deliberate policy of ensuring to have indigenous people in positions in provinces where the party is not strong not just in Southern Province but in Western and North Western Provinces. That is we can, if possible sign an intra-party statutory instrument to allow the President or the Party Secretary General to appoint certain indigenous individuals in these provinces to run the party affairs. That is if this provision is not in the party constitution. If that cannot work let us go back to the drawing board and amend the party constitution to usher in this phenomenon.

People in those areas will be very comfortable to work with their own and speak the same language. I am sure we can find some capable indigenous people in these areas who are PF members.

We ought to realise that politics is about numbers and inclusion. So let’s look at all the legal avenues and ways of attracting every possible individual to our party for it to grow further than this in all the corners of the country.

Moses P. Sichula,  (PF Diehard)

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Punish soldiers harassing the general public

Dear editor

The defence and security wings were directed by President Edgar Lungu to clean up the central business district of Lusaka.

This was in view of the cholera, the waterborne disease that was first reported on October 6, 2017 in Lusaka. Our men and women in uniform have done a great job of cleaning up the city which is now cleaner than before.Despite doing the commendable job, some soldiers have been harassing the general public. Some people have been beaten up and others soaked in dirty water. Essentially, this kills the whole purpose of fighting cholera. Michael Miyoba, the Daily Nation journalist, was last month harassed by some soldiers as he was executing his duty in the Lusaka central business district. Worse yet, he was even hit on the private parts. This barbaric act by some soldiers is not only bad but, also unacceptable. A few disgruntled soldiers harassing the public should be punished by the high command to deter the would-be offenders. They are denying the good of our soldiers.

Elemiya Phiri, Lusaka

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Give us title deeds

Dear editor,

I write to raise awareness over the land which once belonged to Mr Andrew Kashita, the former transport and communications minister. The land is situated west of Kamanga Basic School.

In 1998 he demarcated the said land and sold it to individuals who later built houses in what is today called Kamanga Overspill. At that time, Mr Kashita had engaged Mr Sonny Mulenga to oversee selling of the plots and many people bought the plots and paid money to Mr Mulenga until for some unknown reason, Mr Kashita came personally and stopped all those with outstanding balances from paying to Mr. Mulenga but to himself. Later the new plot owners were told to pay for a loan which Mr Kashita owed a bank so that a “CAVEAT” could be removed since the land’s title was used as collateral by Mr Kashita to obtain a loan from the bank. This money was donated and paid through a lawyer who even came to reassure the poor residents that now that they had raised the required sum, the title shall be subdivided and each house hold would have a title. To date, nothing has been done even after the loan at the bank had been cleared. My fear is that Mr Kashita is now in his advanced age and he should ensure that the people on this piece of land are issued with tittle deeds before something happens to the big man. The people do not owe him anymore money. In the meantime, there are people who are going round almost every month calling for meetings from where they are collecting money and not issuing receipts, claiming they are fighting to get our title deeds. I advise people in Overspill in Kamanga/Chamba Valley area not to pay anything to these people until we see our titles. Twenty years is such a long time to wait.

Jack Phiri, LUSAKA.

 

 

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