News24

Priest held for red-carding Banda

2010-03-13 18:30

Lusaka - Zambia police said on Saturday they had arrested a Roman Catholic priest, accusing him of calling for the removal of the government of President Rupiah Banda.

Copperbelt police commanding officer Antoneil Mutentwa told AFP that Frank Bwalya had been arrested Friday and charged with conduct likely to cause a breach of peace.

"I can confirm that Father Bwalya has been arrested and charged for conduct likely to cause the breach of peace and will appear in court on Monday," Mutentwa said.

Currently, Bwalya is remanded in prison in Ndola town, 45km from where the celebration took place.

Bwalya, who enjoys massive support in the opposition Patriotic Front (PF) stronghold, flashed a card painted red when he joined the youth commemorating the youth day celebrations in Kitwe north of the capital Lusaka.

The card signified a call for the removal from power of the government, police said.

The youth, close to 2 000 from various organizations, had gathered at City Square and when the cleric flashed his card, they immediately started chanting "we want change" in support of his recently launched civil society organisation, 'Change Zambia'.

Bwalya's civil society has urged Zambians to honk the horns of their cars and flash cards painted red every Friday from 17:00 to 17:15 so as to show their displeasure with the government.