VICE-PRESIDENT Inonge Wina says she hopes the battle of Armageddon has not started in the country.
And Vice-President Wina has asked home affairs minister Stephen Kampyongo to constantly update Parliament on the issuance of national registration cards (NRCs) in constituencies.
She was expressing concern about the alleged abduction of police officers by UPND cadres in Serenje and Mpika recently after a leading question from Serenje MMD member of parliament Maxwell Kabanda.
“… Before I leave, I wanted to seek clarification from her honour the Vice-President as to what government is doing over the abduction of the policemen in Muchinga Province, and the trail of destruction that were left even in Serenje, damaging properties,” asked Kabanda.
In response, Vice-President Wina said the incident was regrettable.
“The abduction of government workers, in this case police officers, is very regrettable. And the abduction was carried out by people who are known party cadres. And some of them were even leaders who engaged in this exercise,” she said during the Vice-President’s Question Time. “The officers who were supposed to intercept this group of hooligans left them scot-free. And now they have escaped the law, but they will be followed because they are known. So, Mr Speaker, it’s very, very unfortunate that incidents of this nature can arise where violence is used on innocent people who should be protecting our politicians. But instead they are beaten. I hope this is not the beginning of Armageddon we hear about.”
She wondered what would happen towards next year’s elections if such things could happen now.
“Mr Speaker, it’s very regrettable that things like this can happen in our country, or may be the beginning of the turbulence that we have heard about. If we start to be unruly before we even end the year going into 2021, at election time I don’t know how the situation will be like,” said Vice-President Wina. “And I want to urge our police officers that they should not condone any lawlessness as we saw in Mpika and Serenje.”
And responding to Mapatizya UPND member of parliament Clive Miyanda who expressed concern on the poor NRC issuance exercise conducted under phase two in the area, Vice-President Wina assured that everyone would be captured.
“Your honour the Vice-President, I want to take you back to the issuance of NRCs, yes. The teams that moved to Southern Province and other provinces in the second phase, or the case of Zimba district which is under Mapatizya, the teams only arrived on the 20th of September,” said Miyanda. “Unfortunately for us the equipment which they should have used was not delivered. The equipment only arrived after 10 days. What will happen to the groups which were not attended to because of the delay of 10 days?”
Vice-President Wina assured that Mapatizya would not be disadvantaged.
“The issuance of NRCs is going on very well in Southern Province, including Mapatizya Constituency. I know that there were some challenges in the first three days. It did not go as far as one week. But in that period a lot of work was done through the delivery of machinery to ensure that our people are captured as they come to the centre,” said Vice-President Wina. “So, Mapatizya will not be disadvantaged. I am sure the officers will work with speed to ensure that everyone is captured… The issuance of NRCs is very important for our people, and I’ll urge the Minister of Home Affairs to regularly update the House on the provision of NRCs. And this, I’m sure, will put to rest the anxieties of members of parliament regarding the issuance of NRCs in their constituencies.”