Changes by President Lungu at Police Command justified says former police top cop Malama

FORMER Inspector General of Police Dr. Martin Malama has commended President Lungu for making some reshuffles at command level of the Zambia Police Service following the hand-over of a preliminary report on the killing of two citizens in unknown circumstances.

Dr. Malama, who is also Kanchibiya Member of Parliament, said the current Inspector General of Police Kakoma Kanganja remains a capable man to oversee the investigation into the recent killings.

“My brother Kanganja is a man of firmness but has demonstrated resilience in leading the police service at a time the service strives to maintain professionalism amidst provocative politics from politicians. The judgment by the President is a step in the right direction,” said Dr. Malama who briefly served as Inspector General of Police after the PF came into power in 2011.

Dr. Malama has however advised police officers not to get timid in doing their work following the termination, non-renewal of contracts and some reshuffles.

“The action by the President as Commander in Chief should be seen as a call to do more and maintain police ethics in the discharge of a noble mandate given to officers in the maintenance of law and order, as well as protecting lives and property,” said Dr. Malama.

Dr Malama also defended the President’s decision to terminate the contracts and not to renew other contracts of senior officers who were leading the operation when a prosecutor, Nsama Nsama, and a UPND youth citizens were shot dead.

Meanwhile, Dr. Malama has taken a swipe at media houses trying to belittle decisions made by the President to make changes.

“The President does not make such decisions lightly. Some scribes and politicians wanted him to make decisions in hasty but decision-making at the level of Republican President have far more reaching implications. The way Republican Presidents make decisions are different from a News Editor sitting behind a desk and choosing what or how to write in an editorial or an opposition party president appointing aides,” said Dr. Malama.

He said decisions to fire, demote or relieve some officers do not necessarily mean those officers are guilty of any crime. He said various considerations as jurisdiction of crime scene or many other matters could have been taken by the President necessitating him to invoke presidential executive powers.

The former Inspector General of Police says he is optimistic the Zambia Police will scale-up the efforts to contribute to free and fair elections next year but also strive to maintain balance in managing political tensions.

Dr. Malama has since encouraged officers whose contracts have been terminated or not renewed to move on in life and find other means to support Government.

President Lungu fired Deputy Inspector General of Police for Operations Bonnie Kapeso and did not the contract for Deputy Inspector General of Police for Administration Eugene Sibote, among other changes.