Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) Acting Secretary General Joyce Chembe Musenge has come out of the cocoon to attack the law enforcers for failing to act in time on suspects who abducted the newly released 13 girls in Zambia.
Earlier this year Pemela Chisumpa, a mobile money agent and 12 other girls were abducted and kept in Chalala area.
The girls were rescued this week after one of the girls sneaked out of the room where they were being kept and mobilized other people around the area to rescue the remaining captive.
While commending the people who rescued the girls, Mesenge has questioned the law enforcers for taking time to act on the matter.
She also condemned lack of communication between parents o some girls and the school management as some were nursing students.
“The abduction of the nine nursing students occured between 15th, August and 20th September, 2022 only to be rescued on 3rd October, 2022 in Lusaka’s Chalala area. The approximately two months of school authorities and respective families not reporting the missing individuals to relevant institutions is evidence of broken communication systems and family values of looking out for family and one another’s wellbeing.
“The church, political and traditional leaders and the community at large needs to ensure that the country gets back to the basics of family values and being vigilant of everyone’s well being on a daily basis. Neighbors also need to begin taking interest in unusual acting or sound in the community, as it is our belief victims could have been screaming for help but ignored. The nation needs to rebuild strong family values and friendship bonds that will be interested in the everyday welfare of others,” said Musenge in the statement.
She added: “We are concerned that the investigative process by the police was prolonged before the thirteen ladies were rescued this week. This is because we are told, phone calls were made to some contacts of the victims from the same premises yet systems employed by ZICTA and police could not timely zero in on the suspects.
“Both the police and ZICTA need capacity building in investigating cases of such nature which they described as alien to Zambia. It should not take over seven months to capture abductors who were keeping their victims in one location where demands of ransom were made.
“Our concern as a party is that from the minister’s statement criminals can now easily impersonate police officers as two men in Makeni Simson area abducted one victim on the pretext that they were tracing a stolen phone, thereby coercing her to follow them to a police station which led to her disappearance.
“We call upon the police to employ new tactics and identification measures so that more victims do not fall prey to criminals of similar or different nature. The security and safety of every citizen should be made paramount and it is the responsibility of the police command to ensure this. We also call upon the relevant authorities to ensure that the abductuctors who committed this heinous crime are severely punished to serve as an example to would be future offenders.”
Meanwhile, the law enforcers have arrested 5 suspects in connection with the abduction scandal.