According to the Human Rights Watch report vol. 8. No 4 (A) of 1996 under sub head ‘Deaths in Disputed Circumstances’, by 1996 Zambia had experienced killings of political opponents blamed on the government agents. This largely showed failure for the government to the individual’s right to life set forth in article 6(1) of the ICCPR: “Every human has the inherent right to life. This right shall be protected by law. No one shall be arbitrary deprived of this life.”
Human Rights Watch/Africa believes the deaths of opposition members were commissioned
1. Baldwin Nkumbula died on August 27, 1995. Patrick Mubanga Kafuti, who was in the car at the time of the accident said Nkumbula was killed by State House agents. No inquest was carried in the killing
2. Clement Busa Bulanko, a National Party candidate in Luapula constituency for 1996 November elections, was murdered in July 1996. No inquiry was instituted in the killing.
3. Rex Mushamushi, a National Party provincial treasurer, was shot dead by unknown assailants in suspicious circumstances on August 31, 1996. No inquiry was undertaken
4. Harry Kamima, a former director general of intelligence died in early 1995 of unknown causes. He was one of UNIP Stewarts and his opposition political party colleagues suspect government agents killed him.
*We may have among ourselves people who have killed for political reasons and all other motives. They are guilty and their conscience is troubling them. To find comfort they are trying to please the family members of those they might have commissioned assassins to kill.
Good cannot come to bad. If our country has been infected with dishonesty, hatred and selfishness of killing others just to secure a political tenure in office.
If all these injustices exist in a nation, there are no ways we will get a good democracy, a good government and development that is desired. This is because a sense of insecurity for those opposed to government cannot allow them to raise their voices. The hurt of not allowing others with a different view from ours to speak to the nation through formal media carries almost the same hurt that can lead one politician to kill those who hold sensitive information about them.
This is why the people of this country must demand total independence of investigative wings of the State and all suspicious looking deaths of every citizen must never be a closed case and until a proper inquest provides answers to all the questions that the public may have on their mind.
Real killers must be exposed and brought to justice if the right to life of their victims is to be seen to be a concern of the State to protect.
*Brutal Journal comments