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LIFTING OF IMMUNITY COMES WITH CHANGE OF GOVT – CHURCH


By KETRA KALUNGA


Only a prima facie case should trigger the lifting of former President Edgar Lungu’s immunity and not mere vindictiveness, the church has said.


Evangelical Fellowship of Zambia (EFZ) bishop, Paul Mususu said yesterday the country would continue to have the same debate every time there is a change of government because the law allows the lifting of immunity for the former President.


The church however said there was nothing sinister about lifting the former President’s immunity if criminality is found.
Evangelical Fellowship of Zambia (EFZ) bishop, Paul Mususu said in an event that Mr. Lungu’s immunity was lifted, he should be tried in the courts on the same charges for which the immunity was lifted.
Bishop Mususu told the Daily Nation that there is nothing wrong in lifting the immunity of Mr. Lungu if there is a prima facie case established, however, he should be prosecuted on the same prima facie case established through investigations.


“When President Chiluba’s immunity was lifted what was the problem was that the charges over which his immunity was lifted were not the same charges that were taken to court.


“This I got from Dr Chiluba himself, he said ‘where is the church, the Law Association of Zambia, they lifted my immunity based on the fact that there was a list of 8 points that Mwanawasa had itemized but none of those were brought as charges and think that is unfair, it is injustice,’” he said.


Bishop Mususu urged Zambians to trust and respect the court instead of protecting wrongs that the former President might have committed under immunity because if such a person has been falsely charged they would be proven innocent and would be acquitted.


He emphasized the need for a debate on lifting Mr. Lungu’s immunity to be fair and justice and not vindictive because that would be a failure to the nation.


Independent Churches of Zambia (ICOZ) President David Masupa said calls to have Mr. Lungu’s immunity lifted shouldn’t shock the nation because it’s the precedent that the country set when it allowed late President Fredrick Chiluba’s immunity to be lifted.


He told the Daily Nation those pushing the debate with little knowledge on the matter should step aside and let those with a wide understanding articulate the matter bearing in mind that no action has been taken by the President on the matter yet.


“The timing is wrong because the country is coming from elections and some sections of society are divided, for now uniting the nation is the most important thing to do,” he said.

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