Police yesterday brutally assaulted United Party for National Development (UPND) Chikankata Member of Parliament Munji Habenzu and Prime Television journalist Kalani Muchima.
Three UPND cadres were also beaten and one rushed to University Teaching Hospital as his condition was reported to have been critical.
The police pounced on Habenzu soon after UPND leader was whisked away from Woodlands police station where he had been summoned for unspecified reasons.
Habenzu was physically battered by a horde of police officers who lifted him from the entrance to the reception With the intention of taking him to the police cells.
Habenzu who sustained a swollen face from police beatings charged that Zambia had degenerated into a police state and that the police had become the enemy of the people.
Almost at the point of breaking down, Habenzu confronted the police demanding to know why he was beaten and the police were heard saying they were following ‘orders’ to beat UPND cadres.
Habenzu in rage told the police that they were unprofessional and barbaric by attacking citizens who were defenseless.
One female police officer was heard saying: “Namenyabali five (I have beaten five).
“What country has Zambia become where the police are brutalizing citizens? What have I done wrong for you to beat me? You have become enemies of the people you are supposed to protect. I am extremely disappointed with you and your leadership because you are acting completely unprofessional,” Habenzu said.
And a Prime TV journalist Kalani Muchima yesterday became yet another victim of police brutality as he was severely beaten while he was filming the beating of Habenzu.
Kalani does not know what hit him on his thumb and when he raised his hand; his palm was covered in blood and he did not even know who had beaten him.
And when he attempted to get a police report, Muchima was told by a female police officer at the reception to get out because the police had beaten many and that they had also suffered beatings from cadres and did not complain.
Muchima complained to police public relation officer Charity Munganga Chanda that the police officer at the reception had refused to give him (Muchima) a report.
Munganga Chanda told Muchima to go back to the reception to get a report but the Prime TV journalist was not amused by the behavior of the police and walked away.