Police have confirmed that three people have been killed by an instant mob in separate incidents in Lusaka’s densely populated shanty areas on suspicion of being behind the spate of house gassing. And latest reports show that officers from the Zambia Army have been deployed in Kanyama compound, one of the areas where the riots erupted.
Police Spokeswoman Esther Katongo told a media briefing that three men from Chawama, Kanyama and John Howard were burnt to death separately by angry mobs following riots.
“In the early hours of today, members of the public in Kanyama attacked and killed an unknown male person on suspicion of being one of the people spraying households with chemical substances. They also blocked some roads in the area. Police responded to the report and after picking the body with the view of taking it to UTH, the mob charged and blocked the road and begun throwing all sorts of objects at the officers. As a result, they damaged the Police vehicle for Kanyama Police and further went and caused some damage on the newly constructed police station in the area and a Police House,” Mrs Katongo said.
She added, “Later around 10: 30 Hours, a mob in Kanyama West damaged a Police post and killed one member of the public. Another mob went and damaged Mumbwa Road Police Post. Various private properties have been damaged by the mob and are yet to be quantified.”
Mrs Katongo said in a related development, irate members of the public in Chawama ‘s John Howard descended and killed an unknown male adult who was later burnt and later attacked police officers at the Police Station and seriously injured some officers who were on duty.
She said another disturbance was recorded in Lusaka’s Chaisa area but quick response by police saved the situation from deteriorating and officers are still on the ground monitoring the situation.
She added, “We reiterate our earlier call that people should be calm and allow the police to do their work without undue disturbance. The prevailing situation where members of the public are resorting to attacking police officers and getting to the street to riot is defeating the whole purpose of investigating the incidences of malicious administering of chemical substance on innocent citizens by criminals as the police may shift their attention to quelling riots. We regret the loss of lives that have occurred, however, we wish warn the general public to desist from taking the law in their own hands as may come with serious repercussion.
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