A retired senior army officer has urged PF members not to be over excited with Lungu’s declaration of a state of emergency because they may just end up being at the receiving end because that is the best time for military to seize power. He has said that if not careful, Lungu may be playing to the gallery of his own members that may want to overthrow him using the military.
And Edgar Lungu is today expected to have another emergency meeting with commanders of defence forces and heads of financial institutions operating in Zambia, this is according to a statement from State house and made available to the Zambian Watchdog.
In an exclusive interview with the Watchdog, he said that some of the characteristics of the state of emergency is that constitution gets suspended and more power is given to the police and the army to apprehend and detain even on mere suspicion without even taking the detained to court.
“Under state of emergency, there is more power to the defence and security forces and if there is resistance it may lead to civil war and then make a fertile ground for a military seizure of power in order to ‘restore sanity’ and when such things happen usually politicians from the ruling and opposition parties may be detained and to some extent killed,” he stressed.
He also said that the move will counter the country’s economic growth in that there will be restricted movement and this will mean that companies that have double shifts may be forced to reduce the labour force and in turn reduced production and sales. The restriction of movement may also negatively affect copper production and Parliament and court sittings may also be suspended in some cases.
He said that investor confidence also reduces because the government can abuse its powers and seize businesses belonging to perceived or real funders of the opposition thereby creating massive unemployment and stress that may lead to civil war and making the state of emergency difficult to revoke because there would be everlasting insecurity.