ATTEMPTS to lift immunity for former Presidents that leave office is immature and breeding ground for dictatorship, veteran politician Katele Kalumba has warned.
Dr Kalumba said it was undemocratic to start scheming to lift former President Edgar Lungu’s immunity before any prosecutable case is established against him.
“The tendency of attempting to lift immunity for former heads of State is unacceptable and a recipe for dictatorship, because this can result in leaders refusing to leave office for fear of being prosecuted,” Dr Kalumba said.
He said it was important for investigative wings to heed President Hakainde Hichilema’s advice to avoid witch-hunt in the fight against graft.
“It is important for us as a nation to start respecting our former leaders. It should not be a trend that if a President leaves office, then he should be subjected to prosecution,” Dr Kalumba said.
He said removing Presidential immunity for former Presidents had not made the country rich but has left injuries.
Dr Kalumba said constitutional immunity was a Constitutional imperative which underwrites the country’s democracy.
“We have been through that road before. It never left us with glory or more wealth. We just incurred injuries whose legacy ushered in ‘Bally’. Immunity is a Constitutional imperative which underwrites our democracy,” he said.
By PETER SICHALI