Zambian president threatens to declare state of emergency

LUSAKA -- Zambian President Edgar Lungu has threatened to declare a state of emergency if people do not stop setting ablaze public properties in the wake of the arrest of the country's leading opposition leader, local media reported on Friday.

The Zambian leader said in the southern tourist capital of Livingstone on Thursday night that he will be forced to declare a state of emergency unless people stopped damaging pubic property.

"Police, look out for these rabble rousers and trouble makers and bring them to book. You are forcing me to consider a state of emergency," Lungu is quoted by the News Diggers when he addressed supporters.

The Zambian leader however said the state of emergency would only apply to areas where there was trouble and not the entire country.

Zambia has witnessed sporadic fires where public buildings have been set ablaze since the arrest of Hakainde Hichilema who has been slapped with a treason charge.

On Thursday, the police warned people behind the fires that their days were numbered as they will soon be arrested.

The police suspect the fires were deliberately started to cause panic and alarm in the country.

Meanwhile Lungu laughed off claims that he will step down following the intense political environment caused by the arrest of the opposition leader.

Lungu narrowly emerged winner of last year's elections which have been disputed by the main opposition leader.

[ Editor: zyq ]


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