LAMECK Mangani says it is difficult to ignore speculation that Rupiah Banda is connected to attempts to remove Mutembo Nchito from the office of DPP because of how he campaigned for President Edgar Lungu in last month’s presidential election.
And Mangani says the harassment of the Director of Public Prosecutions has exposed the indecency of many people.
Commenting on last week’s arrest of Mutembo, Mangani, who is former Chipata Central MMD member of parliament and home affairs minister, said adherence to the law would curtail public speculation that the executive arm of government was pushing for the unprocedural removal of the DPP from office.
“The matter is being mishandled; we are creating room for speculation because it is a known fact that Banda assisted President Lungu, there will be so many speculations. The DPP was prosecuting president Banda and so we’ll complicate matters unnecessarily,” he explained. “Everybody is just speculating saying, ‘What is this?’ So we should avoid speculations on important matters like this.”
Mangani wondered why the petitioners were avoiding the constitutional procedure for removing the DPP.
He added that currently, the manner in which the debate over the Director of Public Prosecutions was being handled simply raised public concern that the senior legal civil servant was becoming a victim of political harassment.
“If there are issues surrounding the DPP, the most important approach is formation of a tribunal. I think that will resolve a lot of constitutional issues [because] at the rate we are going, it’s like we are mishandling the case. If he committed any offences, let those be dealt with by the tribunal and I think it will be more decent than the way things are being done; you go to the magistrates’ court and [at] the magistrates’ court, the case is thrown out. It’s not decent and it raises concerns that there may be manoeuvres to harass him (Mutembo),” said Mangani. “I think that move [of arresting Mutembo] is not the best. Let’s follow the Constitution and let’s follow the law. I don’t know the type of offences he committed but the law says that if the DPP has misconducted himself, the best is the President should set up a tribunal to sort out those matters. I think that should be the first step.”
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