By GIDEON NYENDWA
IT is unnecessary to “excite” Zambians with a political ploy that an Esther Nyawa Tembo whom the security wings don’t know, illegally acquired 15 apartments and yet they know the registered owner, former ambassador, Emmanuel Mwamba has said.
Mr Mwamba has demanded that law enforcement agencies stop harassing the former First Lady and her family.
“Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) saying, we have an unknown person in the name of Esther Nyawa Tembo, is wrong because the whole country knows Ms Esther Nyawa Tembo is the former First Lady,” Mr Mwamba said, adding, “you mean the former First Lady or the former President can’t build a block of flats?”
Mr Mwamba said it was sad to see the first family ostensibly being targeted over a mere block of apartments when an “ordinary Zambian can build similar flats or even more.”
He decried the habit of “scandalising people” using the law even when the security wings know they can afford to have the property they own, but proceeding to dent people’s reputation wantonly without evidence.
Mr Mwamba challenged DEC to state whether they did not have prior paper work to authenticate the ownership before going to the media to scandalise her and her family before even going to court, like the case has been in many others of so-called “proceeds of crime” suspects.
He challenged the DEC to “simply walk up to the former first lady or the former President and ask about those flats and not scandalise them in the media.”
Mr Mwamba, a vocal critic of the UPND government on a number of governance issues, rule of law and economic issues, warmed that the ruling party “risked” decampaigning itself ahead of the 2026 polls if they deliberately and maliciously tried to “crash” their PF opponents without regard to the law.
Mr Mwamba has described the ongoing probes against PF senior members as a targeted political fight to silence the party ahead of 2026.
Meanwhile, Zambia Republican president Wright Musoma has said the DEC is being mischievous by claiming that they do not know the owner of the 15 houses they took possession of when they clearly stated the said property was believed to belong to Esther Nyawa Tembo.
Ms Mr Musoma said DEC was being alarmist because everyone knows that Esther Nyawa Tembo was the former First Lady.
Meanwhile, DEC has indicated that it has given the owners of the 15 flats a three-month ultimatum to come forward before they were forfeited to the state.
Mr Musoma said the former first lady was a credible and respected person in this country and if they had questions regarding that property they would have just called her for questioning.
On Friday, DEC took possession of 15 houses in the New Kasama State Lodge area believed to be owned by Ms Esther Nyawa Tembo.
The houses that were complete and ready for occupation were reportedly abandoned and the DEC has since taken possession of them.
The DEC was however yet to establish who Ms Esther Nyawa Tembo was.
Mr Musoma said he wonders why law enforcement agencies were hell-bent on embarrassing the first family.
He said all investigative wings were now operating as though they were agents of the ruling party because they do not seem to defend the interest of the people anymore.
Mr Musoma said if DEC were to claim the property was believed to be Esther Nyawa Tembo they should have just called her so that she could clear her name than alarming the public.
He said also said how could a person abandon such a property that was already complete.