Power and Politics

Ex-President Lungu denies knowing driver caught with drugs, calls on govt agency to show professionalism


Ex-President Edgar Lungu has expressed shock at the allegations by the Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) that they had arrested his former driver for trafficking in cannabis.

The DEC in Eastern Province reportedly arrested a security personnel, identified as Juvensio Phiri, an alleged driver of Lungu for trafficking in 55.6 Kilogramme (Kg) of loose cannabis.

Responding to the arrest on Wednesday in a statement issued in Lusaka, the former president denied having had a driver by that name under State House or under officers attached to his office from the Police.

He called on the Drug Enforcement Commission Director General, Nason Banda, to show minimum decency and professionalism.

“I want to call on public institutions to remain professional despite the political pressure they receive from desperate leaders who are engaged in attempting to tarnish my name or my legacy,” Lungu said.

He also called on the media to be professional despite the current political pressure, the state of shrunk democratic space and reject the temptation or allure of making them as paid voices to parrot government propaganda.

Lungu cited the recent story where he called for the Implementation of quality education and the need not to sacrifice quality education in the name of free education.

The former president stated that this statement had grossly and falsely been reported that he called for the cancellation of the free education policy.

Read More: Drug Enforcement Commssion confirms arrest of drug traffickers in Lusaka, Luapula, others

“Zambia was facing a serious crisis with the challenges of the economy, disease outbreaks and the worst cost of living in many decades,” he noted.

He said Zambia was also facing the threat of food insecurity following the drought caused by the El Niño weather effect and the wanton maize exports that was done without due consideration the national strategic maize reserves.

Lungu stated that the concerns about food security was so serious that it may worsen the current economic conditions if not dealt with adequately.

“I want to call on the government of President Hakainde Hichilema to concentrate on delivering service to the people of Zambia,” he advised.

Lungu added that government should concentrate on resolving the various crises facing the nation than on efforts of attempting to destroy democracy.

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