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Immunity lifting moves should be stopped – DNA

Immunity lifting moves should be stopped – DNA

PERSECUTION which was unfairly inflicted on former President Frederick Chiluba and other former heads of State should not be repeated by tolerating manoeuvres to lift former President Edgar Lungu’s immunity, Zambian DNA spokesperson Spuki Mulemwa has said.

Mr Mulemwa said the desire of some individuals to strip off former heads of State’s immunity was an ill-conceived scheme orchestrated to tarnish their image in the court of public opinion.

He said there were no justifiable grounds to do so except to humiliate, embarrass and fix them in an effort to paint them black
Mr Mulemwa warned that the unfortunate moves also dents the country’s image to the international community.
“Zambians will recall how the late President Levy Patrick Mwanawasa rushed to Parliament to accuse the second Republican President, late Frederick Chiluba of wrongdoing when he presented the so-called prima facie case to have his predecessor’s immunity lifted by Parliament,” he said.
Mr Mulemwa said as a matter of fact, Parliament lifted President Chiluba’s immunity and he was tried by Courts of Law like a common criminal and was subsequently acquitted.
He said the case was the same for fourth Republican President Rupiah Bwezani Banda whose immunity was lifted after he left office by the PF administration under late President Michael Chilufya Sata and Dr Kenneth Kaunda, the first President whose immunity was lifted by Dr Chiluba.

“We pray that President Hakainde Hichilema will not succumb to such ill-conceived demands as the same fate will befall him immediately after he vacates office,” Mr Mulemwa said.

And Centre for Constitutionalism and Legal Justice Director Isaac Mwanza said the plot to remove the immunity of Mr Lungu was premature and a sign of hate politics that is associated with democracy in Zambia.

Mr Mwanza said manoeuvres to remove the immunity of the former head of State undermines and defeats the purpose of conferring immunity on a sitting President.

Mr. Mwanza challenged those pushing for the removal of Mr. Lungu’s immunity to produce evidence of criminality for which he could be prosecuted instead of doing so out of unsubstantiated allegations.

Meanwhile, Zambia Republican Party president, Wright Musoma also urged President Hichilema not to be persuaded into lifting the immunity of Mr Lungu.

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