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Stop oppressive tendencies, Zambian opposition tells Lungu

01 July 2016, 12:16

Lusaka - Zambian opposition leader, Hakainde Hichilema, has urged President Edgar Lungu to put an end to his oppressive tendencies, telling him that the world was now "closely watching" his actions, The Post reported on Friday. 

Hichilema, who is the leader of the leader of the United Party for National Development (UPND), said this after concluding a consultative meeting with opposition political party leaders and a previous meeting with the United States officials.

He urged Lungu to stop the victimisation of The Post newspaper, saying it was "unconstitutional".  

Zambian authorities ordered the closure of the publishing company, Post Newspapers Limited, on June 21, demanding $6.1m in tax arrears.

The Post criticised government's actions, calling them illegal, as it had already paid partial amounts it owed in taxes and even had a court order to prevent its closure, reports said. 

"Today it is The Post, tomorrow it will be Radio Phoenix, the other day it will be Muvi TV, Prime Television and it will be Hot FM, the list goes on. This is unacceptable. I want to remind Edgar Lungu and the PF government that the world is watching what is going on in Zambia. Zambians are watching Edgar Lungu very keenly. Press associations across Africa and beyond have joined the International Press Institute in condemning Lungu's suppression of The Post. There is nothing that can be hidden in today's times," Hichilema said was quuted as saying.

Earlier this week, President Lungu told United States diplomats to raise the funds owed by The Post newspaper to the Zambian Revenue Authority (ZRA) if they felt that the newspaper was being victimised.

Lungu also questioned why the diplomats felt they were entitled to share their opinion on the matter, as Zambian diplomats in their country would never feel obliged to comment on US policies.

The Post, which was established in 1991, has been critical of Lungu, who is seeking re-election on August 11.

- News24


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