Double standards

It is happening too frequently, and is a source of grave concern.

There are people who can kill while others steal huge amounts of money and are even able to harangue, intimidate and victimize those who bring them to book without suffering any consequence.The impunity is overwhelming. This is wrong and must be corrected if the rule of law will be sustained.

Classical liberalism calls for equality before the law. In a democracy like ours the law must apply equally. Nobody should be above the law regardless of status.

In fact the rule of law makes it very clear that nobody, not even the President is above the law because he is a creature of statute. In other words the Presidency is created by the constitution therefore the President cannot be above the constitution.

This means that laws must be applied equally without regard to status.  The maxim is that all are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to equal protection of the law. All are entitled to equal protection against any discrimination in violation of this Declaration and against any incitement to such discrimination.

This does not seem to be the case in our country.

A few weeks ago two Kampasa residents were gunned down in cold blood, by officers from the Zambia National Service (ZNS) in circumstances indicative of abuse of authority. To date nothing has happened to those responsible for the deaths. Indeed nothing has happened to the officers responsible for the mayhem that has now left hundreds of people in the cold because thei9r houses were demolished without the requisite court order.

Meanwhile Police in Kitwe have moved quickly and decisively to arrest   close to 13 people alleged to be responsible for the death of former Wusakili Member of Parliament Barnabas Chella who was hacked to death a few days ago.

In both cases life was lost in circumstances that strongly suggest crime. It would have followed therefore that the long arm of the law would have visited the perpetrators regardless of their status.

Zambia is not at war therefore the use of weapons of war or un armed civilians was as obscene as it was savage and inexcusable deserving summary and conclusive action by the Police.

The whole group that went to Kampasa on that fateful day must be charged jointly for a common purpose which resulted in the death of the two residents. The excursion they undertook, armed with live ammunition was clearly intended for the outcome it produced therefore all those involved must be brought to book and face the law.The   weakest link, we appreciate, lies in the structure of our criminal justice system which cannot stand up to scrutiny.It is imperative that the Government upgrades the integrity of the criminal justice system so that it delivers justice without fear of favor.


Categorized | Editorial

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