Zambia Police advised to halt acts of torture, other inhuman treatment of suspects


The Human Rights Commission (HRC) has urged the Police command to take measures to halt acts of torture and other cruel, inhuman treatment of suspects by officers.

Commission Principal Information Officer, Simon Mulumbi, stated that such acts were prohibited by the law as they might seriously erode public confidence in the Zambia Police if further tolerated.

Mulumbi in a statement issued in Lusaka on Tuesday, condemned the torture and ill-treatment of a child offender by alleged officers.

He stated that the Commission was extremely concerned at what seems to be the way of interrogating suspects by officers by beating and torturing them.

“It can be seen in a video circulating on social media in which a suspected child offender was handcuffed and put on what is commonly known as kampelwa (Swing),” Mulumbi added.

He observed that the child was seen hanging upside down from a metal rod, while being interviewed by officers.

Mulumbi said this was in an attempt to extract a confession and identify or locate other persons believed to have been connected to the offence that was allegedly committed.

“The Commission strongly condemns the torture and ill-treatment of the child,” he stated.

Mulumbi said it was gravely concerning that officers who are supposed to uphold the strictest standards of professionalism could resort to torturous, cruel and degrading methods of interrogating suspects.

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He stated that officers were supposed to investigate and bring suspected criminals before the courts of law for their fate to be decided and not turn to verbal and physical abuse, torture or mistreatment of suspects in trying to maintain law and order.

“Therefore, the Commission calls upon the Zambia Police Service to quickly investigate the matter and discipline any officer who would be found wanting,” Mulumbi appealed.

He said it was worrying to note that the culture of torture and ill-treatment of suspects seem to have taken root in the service as it had been observed by the Commission during its continued monitoring of places of detention in the country.

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